Ancillary Staff Pay

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th February 2000.

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Photo of Mr Archy Kirkwood Mr Archy Kirkwood Chair, Social Security Committee 12:00 am, 29th February 2000

That longer period is certainly welcome. However, is the Minister aware that, this Monday, I met a support staff worker who is a married man, works a 39-hour week, but has only £139 in take-home pay—which is clearly below benefit levels? Is the Minister also aware that it is not only a matter of pay? Full-time support staff in the NHS are systematically being replaced by part-timers and by temporary workers, with the consequence that support staff consider themselves to be doing ever more work for ever less pay.

Would the Minister be prepared to meet me and my hon. Friend the Member for Tweeddale, Ettrick and Lauderdale (Mr. Moore) to discuss the issue? Will he also try, in the upcoming pay review and in the Government's comprehensive spending review, to find the best way possible of providing better pay and conditions for people who now rightly believe that they are the forgotten people of the national health service?