OVER 500 angry NHS workers marched from St Thomas’ Hospital to Downing Street on Wednesday evening to demand a 15 per cent pay rise.
‘Enough is Enough,’ they loudly chanted, angry that they have been excluded from the public sector pay increase and are saying no to public sector pay inequality.
The rally was addressed by hospital workers and student nurses from London and further afield.
A young nurse from Brighton, Reizel Quiachon, spoke passionately about their struggle saying: ‘When we are looking after a patient we are involved physically and mentally, you are putting your whole self into care.
‘Yet I have had to work overtime just to survive.
‘My mum was a nurse and I used to hate the fact that I could not spend more time with her, as she was not at home. She was caring.
‘This government is abusing our virtue. We must turn our pain into power.’
Unite member at St Thomas’ Hospital Dave Carr, addressing the crowd said: ‘Our task is to build for the biggest strike we’ve seen in the NHS. We need a national ballot over pay.’
An occupational therapist, Unison member, Jordan Rivera from Homerton Hospital, said: ‘We went to work without the equipment we needed.
‘We will remember three of our colleagues at Homerton who have tragically died from the virus, Michael, Sophie and Dr Choudhury.
‘We are fighting for the students who have stepped up and volunteered to be on the front line and have now been shafted by this government by being dismissed before the end of September as they were promised.’
Speakers at the rally called for a massive turnout for a demonstration in Central London on August 8th.
• See feature tomorrow