Nurses in Wales have put a pause on planned strike action next month after the Welsh Government agreed to further talks on a deal.

The Royal College of Nursing Wales had planned two days of strike action on July 12 and 13, but these have been paused following an offer by the Welsh Government to undertake further talks with the RCN on the non-pay elements of the pay award announced last month. 

As a result, the upcoming RCN Wales statutory ballot, due to open on July 3, will also be put on hold.

RCN members rejected the latest pay offer from the Welsh Government and undertook strike action earlier this month. 

The revised pay package was implemented by Welsh government after the majority of other health unions voted to accept the deal.

RCN Wales is looking for the Welsh Government to commit to improving the working lives of the nursing workforce, which will ultimately address our members concerns about patient safety and the future of the nursing profession.   

RCN Wales Director, Helen Whyley, said: “Our strike action in June has clearly been effective as the Welsh government has listened to RCN members voices about issues facing nursing in Wales and have reached out to RCN Wales for official discussions on non-pay elements of working conditions. For this reason, we are pausing the planned strikes for July and the statutory ballot action asking members to vote on more industrial action for the rest of the year. 

“Industrial action continues to be a last resort for nursing staff, and I have heard their stories of the personal sacrifice they make every day fighting for safe care for their patients that pushed them to vote for strike action. The pressure put on the Welsh government by our members has been key to these talks commencing.”

"RCN Wales Board has agreed that next month’s ballot launch and strike action should be put on hold and that we should return to official talks on behalf our members in Wales. Welsh government has the power the end this ongoing dispute.

“We are hopeful that the discussions with Welsh government will result in significant positive outcomes for NHS nursing staff in Wales, that will improve their terms and conditions of employment in addition to the pay award that has been implemented.

“These latest discussions will be time limited and the RCN will update its members on the outcomes from these talks in due course.”