NHS pay dispute: January strike dates and locations announced

Ministers have the power to stop strikes but have failed to open negotiations on NHS pay. Now, more hospitals in England will see strike action.

These will take place on 18 and 19 January – with further dates to be confirmed in the new year.

You can find the full list of employers where strike action is happening on these dates here.  

Two days of strike action were held in England, Northern Ireland and Wales on 15 and 20 December. Thousands of nursing staff took to picket lines to make their voices heard.

RCN General Secretary & Chief Executive Pat Cullen said: “The Government had the opportunity to end this dispute before Christmas but instead they have chosen to push nursing staff out into the cold again in January. 

“I do not wish to prolong this dispute, but the Prime Minister has left us with no choice.”

Our commitment to members is that everyone employed where strike action has been mandated, will have the opportunity to strike. 

The next phase of strike action will take place in England only. This is because our strike action across the UK may need to be prolonged unless governments find a way to resolve this dispute. 

Additionally, calling strike action in different employers at different times contributes to our ability to prolong strike action should we have to.  

Pat, who has been visiting picket lines across the UK, said: “The public support has been heart-warming and I am more convinced than ever that this is the right thing to do for patients and the future of the NHS. 

“The voice of nursing will not be ignored. Staff shortages and low pay make patient care unsafe – the sooner ministers come to the negotiating table, the sooner this can be resolved. I will not dig in, if they don’t dig in.”

The value of salaries for experienced nurses is 20% lower in real terms since 2010, due to successive below-inflation pay awards. 

Members in Scotland have rejected the latest NHS pay offer from the Scottish government and will be joining their colleagues across the UK on the picket line should strike action be escalated.

Industrial action is a last resort, and the RCN is committed to negotiating improved pay deals with governments before taking strike action when the dispute cannot be resolved.

by Wendy
03/01/2023
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