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Steve Barclay reaffirms opposition to reopening pay talks with Royal College of Nursing – British Politics Live | Policy

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Q: Should Gareth Southgate leave or stay?

Star says Southgate should stay. He had done “very good work”, and he was someone “who leads from the front”.

That’s it. Starmer’s phone call is over.

Star reaffirmed its opposition to an electoral agreement with the SNP. He said it was something he had “tattooed on my forehead” because it was so important. Asked if he would prefer to see the SNP backing a Conservative government, Starmer said that would be their choice.

Q: I was horrified by the plan to abolish the VAT exemption on private schools. This will harm disadvantaged backgrounds who get a scholarship.

Star said he wanted to improve standards in public schools. It would cost money. Every Labor policy must be funded, he said. Tax relief for private schools could not be justified.

He said revenue from the introduction of VAT. private tuition would go directly to public schools.

Q: But you still penalize people from disadvantaged backgrounds. It would be more consistent to close all private schools.

Star said he didn’t want to do that.

Q: In the Commons you talked about the facilities at Winchester, Rishi Sunak’s school. Can you name the school with 32 acres of land, a concert hall and a pottery studio?

Star said he couldn’t, but guessed that Nick Ferrari was talking about Reigate High School. He said it was a high school when he wanted to go there, and he left as a high school student. He became fee-paying (while Starmer was a student, although as an existing student his family never had to pay a fee), and Starmer said his facilities may have improved since he left. .

Q: Do you support Bob Seely’s proposal for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to lose their royal titles?

Star said it was better for politicians not to get involved in this story. He said he didn’t think Seely’s bill would ever come to a vote.

Q: How many peers have you created since becoming a Labor leader?

Star said about a dozen.

Q: It’s about 16. Why did you increase the number of Labor peers when your manifesto said you were going to abolish it.

Star says he wants to abolish the Lords. But until that happens, he has work to do, he said.

Q: If elected, you will lose the expertise in it.

Star says there are very good people there. But it has more than 800 members.

Q: So why did you add any?

Star said he needed Labor peers in the Lords.

Starmer says Streeting was right to criticize BMA for opposing longer surgery hours

Q: [From a nurse] What is your position on the nurses’ strike. MPs have had a big pay rise over the past decade, while nurses have had very little over the past decade.

Star began by thanking the caller for his work. He said he wanted the nurses to be paid well. Under the last Labor government there was fair pay for nurses and no strikes.

He said 19% was “more than the government can afford”.

Q: Wes Streeting said the NHS must reform or die. Do you agree?

Yes, said Starmer. He said he had to reform.

We are all living longer. More emphasis needs to be placed on prevention, he said.

He said he wanted to double the number of trained medical personnel.

Q: Streeting said the BMA did no favors to patients when they voted against longer opening hours for GPs. Do you agree?

Yes, Star said. He said opening hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. were unrealistic.

Starmer says pay rise demanded by nurses is ‘more than we can afford’

Keir Starmer has been on LBC doing his regular “Call Keir” phone call.

Q: I haven’t seen any sense of politicians showing a sense of duty. They should put the country first. Will Labor stand up to the unions and stop the strikes from ruining society? President Putin should be happy about that.

Star said the unions did not want to strike. The nurses had never organized a strike before.

He said it was “weird” that the government refused. negotiate with the nurses, while they say they are ready to suspend their strike if the talks resume.

The government “sits on its hands,” he says.

He said that as head of the CPS he had to negotiate with two unions. That’s what he did.

Q: Why should people be guaranteed a raise every year? If you’re in sales, you don’t understand this. Putin is rubbing his hands.

Star said it was very difficult to tell the nurses that they

I recognize that what they are asking for is probably more than they can afford.

Steve Barclay reaffirms opposition to reopening talks with NCR over pay as Conservative health committee says it’s a mistake

Hello. Steve Barclay, the health secretary, was on BBC Breakfast this morning for an interview which focused mainly on an announcement that the government is spending £50m on motor neurone disease (MND) research. But he was also asked about the nurses’ strike, of course, and he stuck to his stance that, although he is happy to meet the Royal College of Nursing, he will not reopen talks over their pay offer. .

He claimed there were seven million people waiting for an operation, and he said if nurses got more money there would be less availability to reduce the backlog in the waiting list . He said:

I don’t want to withdraw money to eliminate the backlog, which we would have to do, we would have to withdraw money from patients waiting for operations to then finance additional salaries.

And if everyone in the public sector were to get a rise in line with inflation, it would cost £28billion at a time when the government needs to get inflation under control because that’s the most important factor in terms of cost of living.

The two figures cited by Barclay were misleading. Unsurprisingly, he claimed that giving all public sector workers a pay rise in line with inflation would cost £28billion; although widely criticized by experts as misleading, it is an agreed figure that ministers have used. But Barclay also claimed that hospital waiting list figures show that seven million people are waiting for an operation, while journalists who cover these statistics are regularly told not to use that description. These are people waiting for an appointment for treatment, and many of them will not need surgery.

But Steve Brine, the Tory Chairman of the Commons Health Committee, also gave an interview this morning, and he told the Today program that by refusing to meet the MRC Barclay was making a mistake. Referring to the MRC’s offer to suspend strikes if Barclay agreed to reopen wage talks, Brine said:

I started off by saying it was 1-0 for the RCN with the shot they made yesterday. I would say the Secretary of State could get to 1-1 inviting them and in fact I’m not sure he has much to lose.

You know, draw better than war-war, and right now we’re in a media war-war and the patients, the public who are paying for this service are just kind of puzzled in the middle.

Here is the program for the day.

9 a.m.: Keir Starmer holds his LBC ‘Call Keir’ phone call.

10 a.m.: James Cleverly, the Foreign Secretary, delivers a speech. As my colleague Patrick Wintour reports, he will say the government will target a group of about two dozen mid-tier countries for long-term diplomatic partnerships in what marks a downgrading of commitment to human rights man as a prerequisite for close relations with the United Kingdom. .

11:30 a.m.: Downing Street holds its morning briefing in the lobby.

After 3:30 p.m.: MPs debate the remaining stages of the Trade Bill (Australia and New Zealand).

4 p.m.: Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, and Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, give evidence to the Commons Leveling Committee on Leveling Up Funding.

At some point today, Oliver Dowden, the Cabinet Office meeting, will chair a Cobra meeting to discuss the Government’s contingency planning for the strikes taking place this week.

And Kemi Badenoch, the international trade secretary, will be in India for talks on the draft free trade agreement with India.

I try to monitor comments below the line (BTL) but it’s impossible to read them all. If you have a direct question, include “Andrew” somewhere and I’m more likely to find it. I try to answer questions, and if they’re of general interest, I’ll post the question and answer above the line (ATL), although I can’t promise to do this for everyone.

If you want to get my attention quickly, it’s probably best to use Twitter. I’m on it @AndrewSparrow.

You can also email me at


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