The island's largest nursing trade union is to survey its members over a revised pay offer from Manx Care.

This year Royal College of Nursing (RCN) members have been protesting over their pay and safer staffing levels, with members marching outside the Tynwald building in protest, setting out on a campaign bus tour and holding two 12-hour strikes.

However, the two back-to-back strike days planned for October 18 and 19 have now been paused after Manx Care's latest offer.

The revised offer would see a further 2.75% consolidated uplift on the 6% that has already been awarded for 2022/23, equating to an 8.75% pay rise for that year. Union members rejected the initial offer in previous ballots.

The pay award of 4% for the year 2021/2022 remains unchanged, providing a total pay offer of 12.75% over two years.

RCN originally said it's looking for a 15% pay increase for its members, but in early September RCN's regional director for the North West, Estephanie Dunn, said that figure 'is not specifically what the members are looking for'.

The latest offer comes as a surprise as Manx Care had repeatedly said it does not have the funding available to offer an enhanced deal, explaining to Isle of Man Today that it had 'exhausted its funding pot'.

Previous offers that RCN have received have been described as 'an insult' and members were particulary aggrieved when the government announced every police officer in the island would receive an extra £3,000 in their pay packets on the same day as nurses marched in protest of their pay from Noble's Hospital into Douglas town center (in July).

The RCN was invited to talks late last week (5 October) where an offer was discussed and a formal letter in writing confirming this offer arrived with the RCN on Monday.

Estephanie Dunn, Regional Director for the RCN in the North West, said: 'We are pleased to have been invited back to the table to negotiate on nursing pay. Talks were more positive, however until we had any offer in writing it would be naïve to have paused our strike action.

'Our members have made it clear that they have had enough through their strong representation on the picket line. We have consulted with the local branch and regional board and the decision has been made to pause action until members have had their say.

'This is a step in the right direction, but it will ultimately be our members who decide if the offer is enough to end this dispute, for now. We still have some way to go to really believe that the Manx government are investing in the sustainable future of nursing on the Isle of Man. This is about fair pay for a profession that is so valuable to the community, protecting the health and care sector on the island, and ensuring patients get the care they deserve'.