Liberal Democrats have announced they would end years of pay restraint for nurses, teachers and police in London by lifting the 1% cap on public sector pay and increases wages in line with inflation.
Under Liberal Democrat plans, the nearly 1700 teachers working in Camden would get an average pay rise of around £1100 by 2021, while the more than 32,000 police working for London would see their pay boosted by £471.
The plans would also lead to an estimated pay rise of £527 for the 421 nurses working in Camden by 2021, helping to tackle the shortage of nurses and potential strikes over pay this summer.
In contrast, the Conservative's public sector pay cap combined with rising inflation since the Brexit vote will mean that by 2021, the average nurse will be nearly £4000 worse off.
The announcement comes as a survey by the Royal College of Nursing has revealed nine out of 10 nursing leaders say they are worried about their ability to recruit nurses and that there are an estimated 40,000 nursing vacancies in the NHS.
Kirsty Allan, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn, said:
“Public sector workers across London have not only been underpaid, but seriously undervalued by the Conservative government. Pitiful pay increases combined with a Brexit squeeze will only make matters worse.
“The NHS is already struggling to recruit and retain the staff they need, while schools in Camden facing budget constraints are being forced to ask for donations.
“It’s time we recognized the hard work of our teachers, our police and our nurses, the people who dedicate their lives to the service of others. They deserve to be treated fairly and paid a proper wage.”
Stephen Crosher, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Holborn and St Pancras, said:
“It’s essential that public sector pay rises keep pace with living costs, otherwise we risk lower productivity, demoralised workers and experienced people leaving the services.
“As my daughter has needed several operations at Great Ormond Street Hospital, I have seen first hand the extraordinary skill and dedicated of health workers. Nurses and other staff who make our hospitals function deserve to be properly paid, they deserve to know that their living standards are going to keep pace with inflation.
“Without proper wages, staff will leave, recruitment will become more difficult, jobs will go unfilled and people will suffer, and medical needs will go untreated for far longer as a result of staff shortages.”