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Clapping for Carers

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20 hours ago, Colin_McLeod said:

 

Of course if there were no folks running the show the doctors and nurses would have to do all that work themselves on top of what they are already doing.  It's popular to think the show runs itself but it doesn't. 

 That’s not what I meant . I meant at the country level.  Dominic Cummings etc 

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2 hours ago, fezza said:

If you want to thank essential workers ask the political leaders to make sure they get a real living wage for the essential work they do - and don't vote for politicians that refuse or obfuscate on the issue. Care workers in particular have very tough jobs and are often paid a pittance. 

 

They do though.

 

No nurse is paid a pittance. I wish I was on £18,000 starting salary....

 

https://www.nurses.co.uk/careers-hub/nursing-pay-guide/

 

BTW no one starts at that pay level most start at a much higher level such as Band 4 or 5. Look at the facts rather than what certain newspapers and politicians tell you.

 

 

 

 

Jason

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1 hour ago, Steamport Southport said:

No nurse is paid a pittance. I wish I was on £18,000 starting salary....

 

My best friend of 30+ years re-trained about 8 years ago as a nurse, he was a plasterer before and when he started the course there were 300+ who came from education and 50 who were 'mature' students.   At the end of the course when he passed there were just 30 from the 300 but 47 of the mature students. Of the younger ones who dropped out most said they weren't happy with what they were going to be paid, the mature ones who stuck the course were delighted to be earning more !

 

When Paul started he was constantly asked why he gave up "such a good paying job" in the end he printed a sheet and handed it to people explaining that work was not regular, clients didn't pay and if the temperature dropped he couldn't work and  he now had regular pay and a pension. 

His take on it was that with so many using the NHS as a political football and making claims of underpayment, the staff eventually believe themselves to be undervalued, of those that sought to leave he said they soon found out that the grass is not greener elsewhere.

 

Apologies for going off topic (again)

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4 hours ago, fezza said:

If you want to thank essential workers ask the political leaders to make sure they get a real living wage for the essential work they do - and don't vote for politicians that refuse or obfuscate on the issue. Care workers in particular have very tough jobs and are often paid a pittance. 

 

I'm not sure what politicians have to do with care workers save for the fact that it was politicians who decided to privatise most care homes.  If it was 1993, then fine - 95% of carehomes were in the public sector, run by councils with employees on standard council wages and terms of emplyment.  But all that's changed - now in 2020 95% of carehomes are run by the private sector and it is these private companies who set the wages and terms of emplyment and should be responsible for providing the necessary equipment.  I doubt if most people will be surprised to know that careworkers in the private sector earn 17% less than their local authority counterparts, 35% are on zero hours contracts, and over 50% have no relevant social care qulifications.  Many of the firms that provide most of the UK’s 465,000 care home beds are owned or backed by hedge funds, while some of the biggest are based in overseas tax havens with the inevitable tax consequence to the UK economy.  So while policitians were recently, and in some cases still are, getting a lot of stick for failing to provode sufficient PPE and other equipment for care homes, that's not really their job, nor the taxpayers' reponsibility.

 

DT

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2 hours ago, Steamport Southport said:

and don't vote for politicians that refuse or obfuscate on the issue.

 Unfortunately, we rarely get a chance to 'vote' folk in, or out.

That is down to a tiny minority of the whole country's voters. The constituents.

 

Given that care workers [in particular] have been on minimal wages for years...without any sort of great public outcry....[until these past couple of months!!!]....I don't hold out much hope for improvements in that area.

With the apparent realisation, comes a healthy dose of hypocrisy, methinks. 

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Posted (edited)

 

2 hours ago, Torper said:

I'm not sure what politicians have to do with care workers save for the fact that it was politicians who decided to privatise most care homes.

 

2 hours ago, Torper said:

Many of the firms that provide most of the UK’s 465,000 care home beds are owned or backed by hedge funds, while some of the biggest are based in overseas tax havens with the inevitable tax consequence to the UK economy.  So while policitians were recently, and in some cases still are, getting a lot of stick for failing to provode sufficient PPE and other equipment for care homes, that's not really their job, nor the taxpayers' reponsibility.

 

I've tried to stay out of this but I can't let this pass.  Can't you see the contradiction in your two statements there Torper?  Politicians decide to privatise a vital service, where the profit motive presents a clear and present danger to the other success measures by which the service should be being judged - i.e. the quality of life of the care home residents - and then say "oh, conditions in care homes are nothing to do with me guv - it's a private industry." 

 

In the UK, we are lucky to live in a society where the entire political spectrum from left to right accepts that governments can and should sometimes intervene in the distribution of scare resources in society for the greater good: we just all have different ideas as to *how much* intervention should take place.  That's the basis for political debate.

 

Politicians, *should they choose*, have it within their power to specify anything they want as to how care homes should be run, how their staff should be paid/rewarded, and how overseas-based hedge funds are regulated.  The question is: do they choose to do so?  And how are they persuaded to choose to do so?

 

Richard

Edited by RichardT
Correcting punctuation
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Politicians set the minimum wage via legislation. They can also set different minimum wages by age group and employment sector. 

 

Obviously they also decide what services are privately and publicly owned and how money should go to the private  care sector through both direct and indirect subsidy and through tax policy. 

 

The question is will people remember care and other essential low paid workers next time they vote? I hope so. 

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22 hours ago, chris p bacon said:

 His take on it was that with so many using the NHS as a political football and making claims of underpayment, the staff eventually believe themselves to be undervalued, of those that sought to leave he said they soon found out that the grass is not greener elsewhere.

 

Apologies for keeping this on the verge of off-topic, but I've been browsing the thread since its start and the recent posts about the NHS got my interest up.

 

I started my working life in the NHS, as an apprentice Mechanical Craftsman, as I was known, at a large South Coast hospital maintenance department. I wasn't a contractor, but fully NHS employed. It honestly was a joy and privilege to say I worked for the NHS, the career path was a job for life which I fully expected it to be. When I came out of time 4 years later, things had changed quite a bit, and unfortunately not for the better. I ended up being the only Mechanical member of my team, so some days I was the only person responsible for looking after an entire Hospital, it's associated Maternity Hospital and occasionly off site medical records centre. Breakdowns in the front of house (plumbing fixtures, etc) & back of house (steam driven plant, operating theater A/C, etc) we're all down to me to sort out. Issues with the medical gas systems were also within my remit as well.

 

My pay for all this responsibily was £19,500. This wasn't 20 or so years ago, but in 2013. I live in an area that has a high cost of living, so that salary was a joke, especially combined with the skills and training I and others in the department had. We asked for better money, but no-one was interested. Stacking shelves at the local Tesco genuinley paid more money. The way we were treated by the some of the public, patients and other members of staff, even in our own department, was like we were worthless, as as far as they were concerned we're just the brain-dead idiots. I'd never felt so stressed and hopeless in my entire life, especially as it had promised so much at the very begining. My experience has unfortunately had a permanent impact on me, mainly as I've lost a degree of empathy towards people and at times have a very negative and pessimistic outlook on things.

 

So yeah, I can fully see people saying that they feel undervalued in the NHS, they can only put up with so much and being on a piss-poor wage only adds to that. As for me, I did leave and it was the best decision I made, though I will admit not an easy one as there is always that pang of guilt for leaving such a place. For the record, a lot of other people left the shop floor of our department and never looked back. I think in the space of a month 5 people quit. I know if I hadn't, I'd have likely topped myself, such was how I felt.

 

To bring it roughly back on theme, I'm classed as a key worker. I have not stopped working, day and night, through this entire crisis, it's just been business as normal. Though, I suspect, very few are clapping for us and what we do.

 

Andy.

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I am also classed as a key worker.  And in common with a great many others have not missed a minute of work throughout the emergency.  I don't seek thanks as I am doing what I am contracted and paid to do and what I enjoy doing namely safely getting large (currently not-so-large) numbers of people to where they need to be.  

 

We have joined in the Clap for Carers some weeks but not all.  We don't bang pans as our cat would be scared witless.  There are young families in the block who have been out roughly every other week and we join them if they are out.  

 

A couple of weeks ago I was gently asked by several neighbours if I would mind not clapping.  Their thinking being that - knowing my occupation - they are clapping for me.  Very generous.  But there are others far more deserving and it is for them that I clap.  

 

Tonight may well be the last.  We shall see what happens at 20.00.  The emergency is far from over but this peak of it has passed.  It is time to move on. 

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On 27/05/2020 at 15:27, chris p bacon said:

 

 

His take on it was that with so many using the NHS as a political football and making claims of underpayment, the staff eventually believe themselves to be undervalued, of those that sought to leave he said they soon found out that the grass is not greener elsewhere.

 

 

 

Its not much different in the railway industry. Permanent staff working for NR, the TOCs, etc tend to love complaining about poor pay and being overworked when the reality is rather different most of the time.

 

(Said as someone who joined the railway after working elsewhere and who does occasionally moan too)

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I do sometimes wonder if people do their research .

 

An old school friend retrained as a nurse some time back and predictably found the pay was [email protected]

 

She’s been going on about it ever since she started , surely you do some basic research of salaries before changing careers ? If it’s not acceptable you don’t do it ?

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On 27/05/2020 at 15:27, chris p bacon said:

 

My best friend of 30+ years re-trained about 8 years ago as a nurse,  <snip>  the mature ones who stuck the course were delighted to be earning more !

 From my original post.

 

2 hours ago, SWT442 said:

So yeah, I can fully see people saying that they feel undervalued in the NHS, they can only put up with so much and being on a piss-poor wage only adds to that.

 A selective quote but I'm only commenting on the relevant part

2 minutes ago, rob D2 said:

I do sometimes wonder if people do their research .

 

An old school friend retrained as a nurse some time back and predictably found the pay was [email protected]

 

She’s been going on about it ever since she started , surely you do some basic research of salaries before changing careers ? If it’s not acceptable you don’t do it ?

 

I messaged him last night and asked whether I'd remembered correctly. His answer was 'Yes" he'd started on £26,000 and was now paid £41,000 after 8 years, he still said that those around him that had been in the job for years were moaning about "poor pay' but had no intention of leaving as it would burst their bubble. He said the hours and conditions were good with a decent pension and he has no intention of changing.

 

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Another non-clinical NHS worker here and it's interesting to read some of the experiences and perceptions on here.

 

It's worth remembering that while nurses are quite well paid there are a lot of less qualified healthcare assistants on band 2 or band 3 salaries whose pay isn't great.  I also used to date someone who worked in a care home, and I think the pay was even worse (for the privilege  of dealing with all kinds of bodily functions, abuse and general unpleasantness).  Of course his ambition was to get his nursing degree (there must have been something about healthcare that motivated him beyond money), unfortunately he caught COVID-19 and passed away recently.

 

As for people being unpleasant to those trying to help; that also applies to some (and I stress SOME) healthcare workers towards the "backroom people" who try to support them.  Thankfully, over the past couple of months pretty much everyone has been understanding and supportive; appreciating that this has probably been the most stressful time of my working career to date.

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A good turn out tonight.

I did get the feeling, (I have no idea how!), that this was some sort of finale though.

 

(I have shown my appreciation, most weeks, by my own free will and sincerely hope I have not offended anyone.)

 

 

Kev.

 

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5 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

We shall see what happens at 20.00.  

What happened was that one neighbour was out banging her frying pan with a wooden spoon.

 

What also happened was that SWMBO started applauding on the sofa and when I raised my hands to do likewise she gently held them down and said "I am doing this for you - you who have gone in to work every day without a murmur and got all those other key workers safely to and from work"  

 

I might have had something in my eye for a moment there.  

 

We then went out and SWMBO loudly banged her bodhran while I waved and was acknowledged from the other end of the block.  

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, chris p bacon said:

 From my original post.

 

 A selective quote but I'm only commenting on the relevant part

 

I messaged him last night and asked whether I'd remembered correctly. His answer was 'Yes" he'd started on £26,000 and was now paid £41,000 after 8 years, he still said that those around him that had been in the job for years were moaning about "poor pay' but had no intention of leaving as it would burst their bubble. He said the hours and conditions were good with a decent pension and he has no intention of changing.

 

 

To me, that's not a bad wage to start on and then wind up on in the NHS. When I quit in 2015, my basic was just over £21,500 as I was Band 4. I think, at that time, it was the pay point below the top of Band 4, which was £22k IIRC. If my pay was £41k, I doubt I'd have been complaining!

 

Not to bang about the wages and conditions, but as a further example, a friend and colleague I kept in contact with after I left got in touch a few years ago saying he'd had enough and if there were any roles were I currently work. As a stroke of luck, we'd literally had a vacancy arise a week earlier. Now, when I left he stayed, and in our department had just become a Chargehand (Band 5) and then went onto be an Estates Officer (Band 6). His role in the NHS meant he looked after a team of maintenance staff and managed certain projects and various other bits and pieces and all the hassle that come with it. He joined us as 'just' an electrician with none of previous responsibility for more money and far less stress than what he was previously getting. My then manager couldn't believe he was willing to come and work for us in a 'lesser' role!

 

I will concede, though, that there will always be people who complain about the pay and conditions no matter how good they are.

 

Edit to add: Having re-read this post and with what I put earlier, I kind of come across as a bit anti-NHS. I'm not, as a service it really is a godsend and has certainly been there for myself and family in the past and should be cherished forever and always, not just at 8pm on a Thursday. With what my role was, I was routinely seeing the front line staff putting their heart and soul into everything they did, despite them being in some challenging and distressing situations. For that, they'll always have my respect, as I sure as hell couldn't do it. But, I freely admit, I do have a chip on my shoulder as to how they were as an employer, but that's my cross to bear.

 

Anyway, I'll try and be quiet now.

 

Andy.

Edited by SWT442
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When I go out to clap I’m especially thinking of ‘backroom staff’ that you can’t thank personally, such as supermarket warehouse staff, night cleaners etc. This can be extended to thank the people you can’t see and hopefully will never need to thank personally such as ambulance staff, hospital porters and the list can go on.

I hope the clapping does finish now, I’d hate for it to peter  out but think people should remember the situation has still a long way to go. To let a second peak develop would be an insult to the hard work everyone have done so far.
Regards

Robert
 

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Went out to applaud this evening, locally its still well supported.  Now the first peak has been achieved, perhaps its time to move on to other things.   It doesn't bother me if others didn't want to applaud in public, its a free country (more or less) and we shouldn't be in the business of forcing compliance with a social activity.

 

Good luck to you all!

 

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Posted (edited)

Always a bit prickly are topics like these on the RM - my missus has been on the NHS Covoid teams and doesn't make much of the applauding - she would much prefer a better pay rise amounting to more than the usual 1% a year (i'm being careful here......  - but I am biased) and in any case the fireworks are beginning to scare the Dog.

 

Moral boost?  - Feel good? - Maybe?  but glad it's done and dusted.

Edited by Crisis Rail
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On 27/05/2020 at 14:17, Steamport Southport said:

 

They do though.

 

No nurse is paid a pittance. I wish I was on £18,000 starting salary....

 

https://www.nurses.co.uk/careers-hub/nursing-pay-guide/

 

BTW no one starts at that pay level most start at a much higher level such as Band 4 or 5. Look at the facts rather than what certain newspapers and politicians tell you.

 

 

 

 

Jason

 

Jason

 

3 to 4 years degree level training funded on own resources?

Injecting Morphine and the responsibility that comes with it on paltry public sector pay increases?

Three figure registration fees payable per annum just for the privilage of working.

Having to pay parking fees at their overcrowded places of work.

 

Assaults.

 

The list goes on.

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Posted (edited)

If I may.

 

Jason,

 

Why is it that having a view that nurses are poorly paid is somehow due to the views of "...certain newspapers and politicians.." rather than facts based on knowledge and experience? To look at it another way, are your views influenced by certain newspapers and politicians too?

 

Recruitment in the NHS has really suffered over the last 5-10 years due to a number of factors but extended pay freezes and the removal of nurse training burseries in 2016 has had a significant impact. Without all the brilliant EU and other oversea's clinicians the NHS would have found it almoust impossible to cope with the last few months. I can confirm that from direct experience and knowledge.

 

Hopefully the Covid-19 crises will remind us all that we all rely on key people for those things that really matter and nurses and others will receive the remuneration that is appropriate.

 

Kind regards,

 

Richard B

 

Edited by 30368
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Posted (edited)
On 02/06/2020 at 15:57, Crisis Rail said:

 

Jason

 

3 to 4 years degree level training funded on own resources?

Injecting Morphine and the responsibility that comes with it on paltry public sector pay increases?

Three figure registration fees payable per annum just for the privilage of working.

Having to pay parking fees at their overcrowded places of work.

 

Assaults.

 

The list goes on.

I guess these are some of the reasons we entered this crisis with something like 43,000 nursing vacancies (1 in 8 posts?), which is a bit of a crisis in itself. 

Nursing (and associated careers) is something I could never do. I'll admit I have not been outside at 20.00 clapping, but on the rare occasions when I have had to visit hospital I try to thank people at the time.

 

cheers    

Edited by Rivercider
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Posted (edited)

It should also be remembered that hospitals are not simply doctors and nurses. Assisting these are an army of 'other ranks' such as Health Care Assistants, Theatre Assistants, Cleaners, Porters, Ward Clerks who without their shift allowance premiums would be lucky to earn more than £18k in any year (outside of London). Would I wipe peoples bottoms, clear their vomit and do all those basic care tasks that are absolutely necessary for under 20k per year? - No I wouldn't. I speak as someone who has recently retired from the NHS, earnt the same as a senior ward sister for 'shuffling bits of paper' and always felt slightly guilty about it

Edited by vaughan45
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1 hour ago, vaughan45 said:

It should also be remembered that hospitals are not simply doctors and nurses. Assisting these are an army of 'other ranks' such as Health Care Assistants, Theatre Assistants, Cleaners, Porters, Ward Clerks who without their shift allowance premiums would be lucky to earn more than £18k in any year (outside of London). Would I wipe peoples bottoms, clear their vomit and do all those basic care tasks that are absolutely necessary for under 20k per year? - No I wouldn't. I speak as someone who has recently retired from the NHS, earnt the same as a senior ward sister for 'shuffling bits of paper' and always felt slightly guilty about it

 

I really do respect your honesty - it's the same situation at my place -  and I'm not denying peoples employment either.

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