Scottish NHS workers 'won't be disadvantaged' by pay
21 March 2018, 17:12 | Updated: 21 March 2018, 17:15
The Scottish Government has promised that NHS staff in Scotland will not be disadvantaged following a pay deal for English workers.
Health Secretary Shona Robison said nurses, midwives, ambulance drivers, porters and other staff would be paid "at least as much" as their counterparts elsewhere in the UK.
Ms Robison was responding to a 6.5% pay rise offer over three years for NHS workers in England.
The deal relates to those employed under Agenda for Change, the national pay system for all NHS staff, apart from doctors, dentists and senior managers.
Ms Robison said: "Following this announcement, we're now working with NHS Scotland staff representatives and health boards to quickly take forward pay discussions.
"We have been clear that we will ensure nurses, support staff, AHPs (allied health professionals), and all other staff groups covered by this agreement will be paid at least as much as their counterparts in other parts of the UK.
"We'll be working to reach a Scottish agreement as soon as possible and pay uplifts will be paid at the earliest opportunity.
"This will include staff receiving retrospective payments to reflect the value of the uplift backdated to April 1 2018.
"The Chancellor has previously committed to providing additional investment to fully fund an English settlement.
"It is my intention to use any Barnett consequentials that come here as a result of this pay deal to invest in a Scottish pay agreement."
The Scottish Government had submitted evidence to the NHS pay review body proposing a 3% uplift for staff earning below £36,500, an increase of up to 2% for those with a salary of £36,500 to £80,000 and a £1,600 rise for staff earning £80,000 and above.
Scottish Conservative health spokesman Miles Briggs said the Scottish deal must take into account the differential tax system.
He said: "This is welcome progress to see NHS England put forward this new pay deal for staff there.
"It is vital that we see Scottish nurses, support staff and Allied Health Professionals equally rewarded here in Scotland.
"I'll be pressing Scottish ministers to guarantee NHS Scotland employees are not negatively impacted due to higher taxes that the SNP have imposed on NHS staff."