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Nursing Pay in Wales

The Fair Pay For Nursing campaign aims to secure a pay increase that is 5% higher than the cost of living. Costs have been spiralling at an unaffordable rate and are set to continue rising. For example, inflation – the way we measure how quickly prices are rising – stood at 7.5% in December 2021.

RCN Wales has submitted supplementary evidence to the NHS Pay Review Body for 2022 alongside the RCN's UK-wide evidence. Nursing deserves a pay rise that is 5% above inflation, as part of a one-year deal that applies equally to all NHS nursing staff at all Agenda for Change pay bands.

The Welsh Government’s response to this demand will indicate what it believes nursing staff who work outside of the NHS deserve too. We are clear that there must be parity of pay and other terms and conditions for all nursing staff, regardless of employer.

Once the Welsh Government confirms the 2022 pay award later this year, RCN members will be asked what they think.

Health is devolved, and funding our health and care system is a political choice. The Welsh Government should make the right choice now. 

Read our submission to the Pay Review Body

We make the case for a pay uplift 5% above inflation and explore the ongoing impact of the pandemic, the staffing crisis facing the profession and the spiralling cost of living.

NHS Pay in Wales

The RCN Fair Pay For Nursing campaign is about:

  • recognising the complexity of skill, responsibility and experience demonstrated every day, by nursing support workers, assistant practitioners, registered nurses and all members of the profession.
  • making sure that a safety critical profession can reach safe staffing levels and fill tens of thousands of unfilled nursing jobs.
  • recognising that the salaries of too many nursing professionals has not kept pace with increases to their living costs over the past decade.

Ultimately, it's about providing safe and effective care for all people of the United Kingdom.

The Fair Pay for Nursing campaign aims to secure significant pay increase for all nursing staff covered by Agenda for Change terms. This increase should be fully funded by HM Treasury rather than repurposing existing NHS Wales funds, as part of a one-year deal that applies equally to all bands.

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Parity in the UK

Fair Pay For Nursing is a UK-wide campaign. Get the overview and find out how you can get involved where you are.

How did we get here?

The Welsh Government announced on 21 July 2021 that NHS staff in Wales will be given a 3% pay rise for 2021-22 - lower than the rate of inflation at the time. It was effectively a pay cut. Read RCN Wales’ response to the announcement.

From 12 August - 13 September, RCN Wales consulted members on their reactions. Members overwhelmingly agreed that the pay award for NHS staff in England and Wales was unacceptable.

On 14 October 2021, RCN Wales lodged a formal trade dispute with the Welsh Government. We gave them 7 days to meet with us to discuss the pay award. When they refused, we took the next step and initiated an indicative ballot on members' willingness to support industrial action.

As the name suggests, an indicative ballot can't formally authorise industrial action, but indicates whether the next steps in our fight for fair pay should include industrial action and, if so, what kind. 

In the November 2021 ballot, 91% of members who voted said they’re willing to take action short of strike and 56% would withdraw their labour in strike action. Industrial action is always a last resort - but we're clear that the current staffing crisis in the NHS is causing unacceptable risk to patients and staff.

In 2022, RCN Wales submitted evidence to the NHS Pay Review Body ahead of the pay award due later this year. 

Make sure your membership details are up to date so we can contact you - check MyRCN now.

Tal Teg Ar Gyfer Nyrsio

Three simple actions to fight for fair pay

RCN Wales on YouTube

View all of our #FairPayForNursing videos and podcasts on the RCN Wales YouTube channel.

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Page last updated - 07/03/2022