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The Scottish First Minister announced the one-off payment during her keynote speech at the Scottish National Party’s annual conference. She admitted she and her team had “made mistakes” when dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. To show appreciation for NHS staff and social care workers who have worked tirelessly throughout the epidemic, Ms Sturgeon said they would receive a £500 payment from the SNP-led Government as a “thank you”.
She said applause and recognition shown to frontline workers earlier in the pandemic “was never enough”.
She told the virtual conference: “I can announce today that, on behalf of us all, the Scottish Government will give every full-time NHS and adult social care worker £500 as a one-off thank-you payment for their extraordinary service in this toughest of years.”
Ms Sturgeon said while there were “no strings attached” to the payment, she did not have the power to make the package tax-free.
She urged the Prime Minister to ensure “NHS heroes” are not taxed on their payment.
The First Minister’s announcement comes amid ongoing negotiations to increase wages for NHS staff above the border.
Eight months into the pandemic, she insisted healthcare workers “deserve recognition now”.
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