A wealthy health minister and Tory peer was blasted last night for claiming nurses are “well-paid for the job”.
Lord Bethell, known as 5th Baron Bethell, was slammed for backing the paltry one per cent pay rise offered to NHS pandemic heroes in England.
Harrow-educated Lord Bethell said: “There are lots of people who have had an extremely tough time and who face a period of unemployment. Nurses are well paid for the job.
“They have a secure job and they have other benefits.”
Furious Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner said: “Born into a job for life in the House of Lords and appointed a health minister after donating money to Matt Hancock’s leadership campaign tells our nurses they should be grateful for their pay cut – I don’t know where to start.”
Anthony Johnson, of Nurses United UK who have been lobbying for a 15 per cent pay rise, said: “I find it pretty funny to be told by someone who is given an allowance of over £150-a-day just for showing up that I’m well paid.
“Our pay is directly linked to the safety of our patients. When you cut our pay it drives nurses out of jobs we love and puts our patients at risk.”
Labour leader Kier Starmer also took aim at the privileged peer.
"I'd invite him to go into the high dependency ward of any hospital in the country," he said.
"If he did so, he would never repeat those words."
Sir Kier has meanwhile called for a 10-year plan to fund the NHS and the social care system. after a decade of Tory austerity.
He said the lack of money in the Budget for hospitals, which are still handling thousands of Covid cases and dealing with a 12-month backlog elsewhere, "rubs salt in the wound".
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