Use your voice to demand change for nursing 

If you’ve ever bought Fairtrade coffee or signed a petition, you’re a campaigner. Campaigning is about using your voice, raising awareness of an issue that matters to you and driving positive change. It’s also a vital function of trade unions. Working with our members, the RCN has been campaigning for more than a century. We’ve been protecting and securing better and safer working environments, improving terms and conditions, achieving better pay and ensuring access to learning.

Every RCN member has the potential to be a campaigner. If something is important to you, invariably you’re able to speak confidently about it. You are an expert in your own experience, so you’re perfectly equipped to give voice to issues affecting you and the people you care for. The RCN is currently supporting members to campaign on local workplace and two key UK-wide issues.

Fair Pay for Nursing

The Fair Pay for Nursing campaign is about:

  • recognising that salaries of nursing professionals has consistently fallen below inflation – a fact which is being exacerbated by the cost of living crisis - and must now rise significantly to reflect that.
  • valuing the training, qualifications, skills, responsibilities and experience demonstrated every day by nursing staff.
  • ensuring that nursing is seen as an attractive, rewarding profession to tackle the tens of thousands of unfilled nursing posts.
  • the campaign aims to secure a pay increase that is 5% above inflation (measured by RPI).

Governments’ response to this demand will indicate what they believe nursing staff who work outside of the NHS deserve too. We are clear that nursing staff deserve the same and fair pay no matter the setting or sector.

Find out more about the campaign and how you can get involved.

Staffing for Safe and Effective Care

We're calling for safe and effective care to be enshrined in law in each UK country. In May 2021 we published the RCN Nursing Workforce Standards  - the first national blueprint for tackling the nursing staff shortage levels across the UK. They set the standard for excellent patient care and nursing support in all settings, and all UK countries.

Read more about the safe staffing campaigns in your country and about the Nursing Workforce Standards here.

Campaign locally on the issues that matter to you

If there are local issues that you and your colleagues want to fix that aren’t about Pay or Safe Staffing, you can still campaign locally to make the changes. You and your colleagues are experts in your workplaces and are best placed to speak for your patients and the profession. Across the UK no matter your job, employer, care setting, or issue, you can be part of the RCN’s organising movement, leading on the issues that matter to you. The RCN aims to support our members to work collectively around local issues and use the power of your collective voice to improve professional standards, pay, staffing levels, employment rights and workplace safety.  No matter how big or small. The RCN is with you every step of the way. Together, let’s use our voices to demand the changes we deserve.

Find out more about Organising for Change.


Industrial action strike ballot

From 6 October to 2 November, we asked you to vote on taking industrial strike action on NHS pay. If you took part in this historic vote, thank you. Learn more about the ballot and strike action in our FAQs or in the video below. 

Find out more

Students, Ballots and Industrial Action

RCN Wellbeing


We provide our members with regular, up-to-date, advice and guidance on COVID-19.

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