NUS-USI President Adrianne Peltz has expressed disgust at the Health Minister’s announcement today that nursing and midwifery bursaries will be significantly cut for students starting courses in the coming days. The Minister announced that annual bursaries will be cut by almost 15% from £6055 to £5165 and the book and uniform allowances will be scrapped for students commencing study from 2012 and beyond.
President of NUS-USI, Adrianne Peltz said: “This announcement is absolutely catastrophic, and so is the timing of it. People are about to commence their courses in the coming days, and they now face this financial bodyblow. This announcement is a disaster for nursing and midwifery students.
“Imagine a wage cut of almost 15% and the impact that this would have on people’s ability to make ends meet. This is what is happening as regards every new nursing student here. They will contribute so much to our heath service through the massive number of hours they will work in our hospitals during their work placements. This is essentially a massive wage cut for them.
“Also, the fact that the Minister is abolishing the much valued book and uniform allowance brings into even sharper focus the massive financial pressure that new nursing and midwifery students will now face.
“This announcement will have thrown into turmoil the plans of students who are starting nursing and midwifery courses in the next few days and weeks, and now face this devastating cut in their bursary.
“It appears that the massive concerns of students have not been taken in to account during the consultation process, as this cut and the abolition of these allowances have been implement in full, as stated in the consultation document.”