Midwives in the NHS have voted to take strike action this months after struggling for years to cope with a deep and enduring shortage of midwives and having their 1% pay rise demand rejected.
Midwives are working flat out, often staying late and doing large amounts of unpaid overtime, in order to give women the best possible care they can. After years of stress, pressure and overwork, being told they face another year of rising bills – but static pay – is just too much!
As a result the Royal College of Midwives balloted their members and for the first time in 133 years they will be taking strike action. On October the 13th some midwives will stop working for four hours from 7am to 11am.
Cathy Warwick, Chief Executive, Royal College of Midwives said in the Telegraph on 30.9.2014:
“There will also be further industrial action from October 14 to October 17. It is likely that any woman using maternity services during this period will be completely unaware that action is being taken. This will be aimed at employers and causing disruption to them, not our patients. It aims to highlight the fact that maternity services often operate on the goodwill of midwives and MSWs.”
A survey carried out by the Royal College of Midwives last year showed that almost a quarter of midwives are considering leaving the profession in the next year because of resentment over pay and conditions.
24% said they were so disenchanted with their work that they would potentially change careers within a year. Of those with fewer than 10 years’ service, the figure rose to 29%.
Cathy Warwick, the Chief Executive of the college, said:
“Many midwives were carrying out growing amounts of unpaid work despite the rewards they receive diminishing.”
Many midwives working at UKBC have worked for a long time in the NHS and we sympathise with our colleagues and understand their issues. It is for this very reason that many chose to leave the NHS and join UKBC – to benefit from better job satisfaction, freedom to manage own caseload and the ability to spend unlimited time getting to know their clients.
Contact us today to see how we can ensure you feel supported at a time when you need it most.