RCN members in England have reacted angrily to a ban on trusts employing agency nurses whose main employment is in their own trust or another NHS trust.
NHS Improvement wrote to trusts last month advising them of the new arrangements but neither the RCN nor the NHS Staff Council agreed the move and there was no consultation.
Members have begun receiving letters from their employers telling them that trusts will only be able to engage staff working additional hours through staff banks and overtime. They have taken to social media to express their anger.
The initiative comes as NHS nursing staff await an announcement about pay, which has been suppressed for many years.
RCN Head of Employment Relations Josie Irwin said: “We do not support this agency ban and we were not consulted. We support the right of our members to work in whatever way is best for them and their families.
She added: “There is no obligation on nurses to join a hospital bank. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that shifts are filled. It is not right that nurses should work for less than they are worth.
“We will be taking this matter up further with NHS Improvement and the Department of Health.”
RCN advice to members
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