Many Facebook users have commented in support of a March 7 WSWS article, “Working class must fight in defence of health workers! UK National Health Service workers offered insulting 1 percent pay rise.”
Sections of the article were quoted in a petition already in circulation from a National Health Service (NHS) worker, Matthew Tovey, who is based in south Wales. The petition also linked to the WSWS article. As a result, when the WSWS article was posted on the NHS FightBack Facebook page, it soon reached almost 25,000 people, generating 3,392 engagements, including reactions, comments and shares.
Many on Facebook registered their approval for the article with comments such as “Yes, yes and yes”, “absolutely”, “100 percent”, “exactly”, “Well said”, “Well written”, “Right on!”. Others posted love hearts, thumbs up and clenched fist symbols in solidarity and support.
Jim commented, “That statement has nailed it for me”.
The article was posted with the above photo of a protester holding up a homemade placard reading, “We are not angels or heroes. We are professionals that deserve a professional pay.” One user commented in response: “The best placard I've seen.”
Lisa wrote, “The worst thing that ever happened was being called angel's, so patronising.”
Adrian said, “I worked in the NHS for 35 years. Totally agree, all NHS professionals want is fair pay, appropriate working conditions and the resources to do their job as well as possible.”
Francis wrote, “If it were up to me you'd get just that! Sadly it is not.”
Carol commented, “While this pandemic [is] on everyone clapped for NHS all the government praised all NHS service workers and some even lost their lives doing their job to care for others. They sometimes had to work round the clock to care for everyone. They deserve to be paid decent pay rises not a pittance of 1 percent it’s an insult to them.”
Mary said, “Yes you are professional and I agree with you, you deserve a professional pay. But you are still heroes for what you have done through this pandemic, everyone of you.”
Carol showed her support for NHS staff with the comment, “Yep where would we have been without you all.”
A number of people responding to the article wrote in disdain about the Conservative governments’ feigned support for the NHS. Janet wrote, “Yeah, lip service doesn't pay the bills.”
James said the “Conservative government has been trying for years to crush the NHS!! Nothing has changed.”
Another commented that Prime Minister Boris Johnson “will use the money you should have got to build a vanity bridge because he and his mates all have shares in his mates companies that will build it, and he will privatise ‘our NHS’ for the same reason”.
Judith wrote, “Exactly. I saw some twit in the House [Parliament] stand up and say nurses pay is good. These politicians are in a different universe. OK, MPs do have to put in some hours occasionally, but they get all their expense paid—by us! NHS staff don’t get anything extra. They have to pay to park a car, and don’t even get an allocated space. Plus they regularly work more hours than an MP. And need I add—they save people’s lives!”
Elaine listed the hashtags #WeHaveHadEnough and #NHSPay15 and pointed out, “A little comparison for you, a nurse with 17 years’ experience earns £30,600 per year, an MP with one years’ experience earns £82,000, plus expenses & subsidised food & drink. How can this be right? I know where I’d rather my taxes go!”
Julie wrote, “I just don’t understand the Government’s view on this and why they won’t increase the nurses pay. I understand it even less when MPs still feel they need a big increase to bolster their already huge salaries.”
Janet commented on the class inequality evident in the nurses pay offer, “The rich will always look after the rich.”
Yvonne shared the article and expressed the sentiment of millions who are prepared to fight to ensure that NHS workers win a living wage, commenting, “You are angels and heroes and you deserve a 10 percent pay rise because you put your lives on the line, you gave up so much to save lives, some of you lost your lives. The people of this country owe you, so yes you are our angel and heroes. We should be fighting for you to ensure you get what you deserve. Boris the liar and his bunch of thieves aren't worth a cent, they have lost millions of pounds with dodgy contracts. Let them take a cut in wages, expenses and close the restaurant in the House of Commons, let them buy meals like the rest of us.”
For more information visit NHS FightBack