Health workers deserve fair pay and conditions- Gildernew
Sinn Féin MLA Colm Gildernew has said barriers to achieving fair pay for health and social care workers need to be overcome urgently.
Speaking after the publication of recommendations by the Pay Review Body, Mr Gildernew said:
"For a number of years, our health and social care workers have worked continuously under huge pressure on a daily basis due to staff shortages, lengthening waiting lists and increased demand on services.
"These pressures only increased over the pandemic.
"Health workers deserve, and are entitled to, fair pay and conditions and the realisation of that is vital if we are to keep the workforce we have, recruit more staff and protect frontline services.
"The British government needs to step up and start taking decisive action in response to the cost of living crisis which is seeing record breaking inflation impacting workers and families, in the north and beyond.
"They must adopt a fair approach to public sector pay - including NHS pay -which values the vital role of workers as called for by Sinn Féin Finance Minister Conor Murphy and his counterparts in Wales and Scotland in their letter to the British Chancellor earlier this week.
“Sinn Féin are ready to form an Executive today to help fix the health service, to tackle waiting lists, hire more doctors and nurses and support cancer and mental health services.
"This should also be the focus of DUP and they should stop holding people in the north of Ireland to ransom by keeping the Executive down.
''Reports today that a one off recognition payment will be made to health workers in August are welcome, however, this should have been in place months ago and it is no substitute for proper pay and conditions.’’