Labour and Conservative councillors demonstrate against proposed one per cent NHS staff pay rise
- Credit: Welwyn Hatfield Labour
Dozens of people demonstrated outside the New QEII hospital on the weekend in a show of support for NHS workers who have only been offered a one per cent pay rise by the government.
Residents and councillors from both Labour and Conservative parties stood outside the Welwyn Garden City hospital for an hour on April 24, to show their support for NHS workers.
Back in March Prime Minister Boris Johnson introduced plans to give some NHS staff in England a one per cent pay rise.
Conservative Cllr Dr Sunny Thusu, who has been volunteering his time by giving COVID-19 vaccines at the Uni of Herts on his days off, said: "As a doctor, I would be more than happy to forgo my one per cent pay rise for the nurses, porters, healthcare assistants and all those key workers who courageously went to work everyday during the pandemic.
"I hope the government will reconsider and demonstrate that they do value the NHS and those who contribute to it.”
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Labour councillor Kieran Thorpe said: "It was a pleasure to take part in the public demonstration of support for NHS Workers last Saturday, fantastically organised and marshalled by the Welwyn Hatfield Trades Council.
"Standing, socially distanced by the roadside holding placards that denounced the Governments awful record in offering these NHS heroes a below inflation pay rise, it was heartening to see (and hear!) the support offered by passing motorists and pedestrians alike.
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"It was telling that even local Conservative Party members joined the demonstration, so wholly out of touch has their Governments handling of this issue been after the whole country spent much of the last 12 months applauding the very same people now being let down."
Conservative councillor Peter Hebden said: “Labour often try to politicise the NHS. Labour do not have a monopoly on the NHS and, despite their continuous claims of privatisation, it is the Conservatives who have supported it for over 46 years of its 72 year existence."
Izabela Pulley, chair, of the Royal College of Nursing Hertfordshire branch said: "We are asking for fair pay for nursing – a decent pay rise which exceeds the one per cent you have heard that the government believes the profession should receive.
"You will hear government ministers say that nursing staff have had a pay rise – but staff are worse off now than they were 10 years ago after years of unfair pay freezes and below-inflation pay awards."