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RCM ‘optimistic’ on pay dispute after Government talks

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has said it is “cautiously optimistic” over a pay deal with the Scottish Government.

A meeting took place between the GMB union, Royal College of Nursing, RCM, and Deputy First Minister, John Swinney, and the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Humza Yousaf on Thursday January 12.

The RCM was told that the Scottish Government remains committed to resolving the ongoing pay dispute.

Midwife vote on strike action
The RMC remain hopefully a agreement can be made (David Jones/PA)

The meeting with the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary took place following the rejection of a previous pay offer by members of the RCM, GMB and the Royal College of Nursing.

The deal offered pay rises ranging from £2,205 to £2,751, which ministers said meant NHS workers in Scotland would remain the best paid in the UK.

The lowest paid staff would get a rise of 11.3%, with an average increase of 7.5%.

Jaki Lambert, director of Scotland at the RCM, said: “Our members have consistently told us that they feel neither seen nor valued by the Scottish Government, and the previous pay offers have done little to dissuade them of this view.

“We are grateful to the Cabinet Secretary that he has acknowledged this and has committed to finding a meaningful solution to this dispute.

“Midwives and MSWs do an incredible job supporting women and families, but all too often they are doing so against the odds.

“We are hopeful that this is a turning point in the dispute which, yes, is focused on pay, but is just as much about the conditions our members have to work in.

“Getting to this point has been difficult, and I’m incredibly proud of our members who are prepared to stand firm for what they believe in.

“For them, supporting women and families always comes first, so to take the decision to take industrial action is way outside their comfort zones.

“I am heartened that the Cabinet Secretary recognises this and is prepared to work with us to develop a positive future.”