NHS mental health nurse forced to get second job driving van for Amazon
A struggling mental health nurse has been forced to take on a second job delivering Amazon parcels so his family can make ends meet.
Matt Tacey, 30, from Sheffield, has spoken out about his fight to make ends meet following the Government’s proposed pitiful 1% pay rise for brave frontline workers.
The dad-of-one should be spending time that he’s not working in hospital with his seven-year-old daughter and his wife Nicole, who is also a psychiatric nurse and is pregnant with the couple’s first child.
But instead he does part-time shifts working for the online retailer because he needs the extra cash.
Matt, who has worked for the NHS for almost 13 years, said: “In my spare time I pick up four-hour shifts here and here, mainly on the weekends, as a means to get money in.
“If I continue to do loads of (extra) work as a nurse I am confident I will burn out. The emotional impact, it takes its toll.”
He added: “That time away from work is when you’re meant to psychologically process different experiences you had during the week, if you had a traumatic event or a patient death.
“They take their toll and you need time away for your own mental wellbeing, but we don’t do that because I’m at work or I’m delivering Amazon parcels.”
Frontline workers have slammed the “absolutely disgusting” and “insulting” proposed pay rise saying they would take home an extra £3.50 or less per week.
While Matt said he was “absolutely outraged”.
“The last 10 years we have experienced austerity, so this is just another kick in the teeth, another stab in the back,” he said.
“It’s not a pay rise, it’s a pay cut. If inflation goes up 3% we lose out on 2% of pay.
“I cannot believe the sheer audacity that the government can call us heroes, and it’s all hollow. It means absolutely nothing to us.
“They stand in their doorsteps for a media opportunity and clap us, but what can we do with claps? They don’t pay our bills, they don’t put food in our bellies.
“People have gone to work and lost their lives caring for their communities and caring for the Government.
“And for the Government to say you lost your life for 1%, to me it’s a public outrage.”
Matt, who tragically lost his 72-year-old grandmother to coronavirus on New Year’s Day, said NHS staff were “sent to a war with water pistols” during the pandemic due to the lack of PPE and wasteful spending by the Government.
He added: “The 1% is so offensive we would have preferred 0% because we know the 1% is actually a pay cut.”
Matt, a member of Nurses United UK’s leadership team, fears more nurses will leave the profession and predicted industrial action this summer.
It was Covid, but “our new enemy is the Government”, he said.
He added: “The Government has attacked the NHS family and they’ve picked on the wrong family because the NHS has had enough.
“We are going to force you to do another U-turn and value us.”
Unions say NHS workers deserve a pay rise as high as 15 per cent after being ignored.
Health minister Nadine Dorries gave a series of media interviews defending the Government’s position, saying nurses have received a 12% increase in pay over the last three years and the average nurse’s salary is around £34,000.
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