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Week of action against student nurse bursary axe

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A week of action follows last month's protest A week of action follows last month's protest

Student nurses are set to undertake a week of action to urge politicians to rethink the decision to scrap student nurse bursaries.

Beginning from 8 February until the 14th, each day of the week will be dedicated to an activity to raise awareness of the student nurse bursary debate.

The activities are a mixture between social media activity, a walkout and posting photos of banners and historical photos. Healthcare professionals can get involved on Twitter using #HuntMustGo and #LoveNHS on different days. #LoveNHS will be used on Valentines Day for healthcare professionals to express all the things they love about the NHS.

On 10 February student nurses and nurses will stage a one hour walkout between 10am and 11am from their place of employment to coincide with the junior doctor strike on the same day. Before taking part in the walkout nurses are urged to speak to their supervisors to ensure that they take part in a safe and responsible way.

This week of action follows a protest on 9 January and a petition with over 156,000 signatures which led to a parliamentary debate on 11 January. A number of politicians have already spoken in favour of keeping the bursaries including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Labour MP Wes Streeting and Conservative MP Maria Caulfield. There was also a summit held by Unison, to cement support for student nurses going forward.

George Osborne announced in the Spending Review in November 2015 that the NHS bursary were to be replaced by a system of loans. He said that removing the bursary would allow 10,000 more nurses to train. There is set to be a consultation over the issue in February.

What do you think? Leave a comment below or tweet your views to @IndyNurseMag

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My opinion is that diseases and ailments are the greatest enemies of mankind and to all citizens of this country, regardless of class. Just as an example; it is well recognised that there is an expected rise in the number of individuals who will be affected by some form of dementia and diabetes, for decades to come. There will certainly be exponential economic, social and political consequences in the absence of robust interventions to militate against such threats to the human race. The fact that nurses will be in the front line and central in dealing with such situations cannot be over emphassied; in some occasions risking their lives to keep this nation and the world safe.
Hence, every measure should be taken to make the option of studying nursing attractive to individual with the right academic qualifications, character and attitude. These measures should definitely include a no-cost promise to students plus some form of remuneration for their commitment.
Furthermore, with no intention to be disrespectful to members of the armed forces, my view is that nurses must be considered as essential as soldiers, police officials, and fire officers. If individuals in this category of the workforce are not required to pay for their training, why must nurses pay? This government must stop meddling with the NHS and thwarting the intentions of those who wish to be part of it. God knows what they will come up with next? all in the pretext of “we are in it together”. Should we be expecting prospective firemen, soldiers and policemen and women to be paying for their education and training.
This brainless initiative must not be allowed, professional bodies must demand that the government drop it now; this country is Great Britain because there are certain things we do differently for the common good.
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