Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland health workers to get 1% pay award

Northern Ireland health workers are to get a 1% pay award.

The Department of Health said the setting of public sector pay policy for 2017-18 had cleared the way for the implementation of a 2017/18 Pay Award for over 55,000 health and social care workers in Northern Ireland.

The 1% uplift was recommended earlier this year by the independent NHS Pay Review Body and the Review Body on Doctors’ and Dentists’ Remuneration.

Implementation was delayed in the absence of a Northern Ireland public sector pay policy for 2017-18. 

The Department said the pay policy, determined by the Department of Finance, along with the allocation of £26million on 29 November, allows the Department of Health to implement the 1% pay award for health and social care workers.

The Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health, Richard Pengelly said: “Our workers are our most valuable asset and they deserve to receive the hard-earned pay which is owed to them. I fully understand the frustrations and uncertainty about pay caused by the absence, until today, of a pay policy.”

The necessary arrangements to make the backdated pay award will be put in place as soon as possible, with full implementation expected before the end of the financial year.

Alliance health spokeswoman Paula Bradshaw said it was a small step in the right direction.

She said: “Now what is required is a Minister in place to consider how health workers are to be compensated for the rising cost of living, now we have seen a further rise in inflation.

“Across the public sector, we will also need to determine and deliver a policy which provides for fair play taking account of awards elsewhere in the UK and any ongoing rise in the cost of living arising from the devaluation of sterling.

“So while this news is good, the fact remains we need Ministers in place delivering fair pay for all.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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