DECEMBER UPDATE – Latest NHS Scotland Pay Offer

The current position is that only 27.6% of IFON members have indicated they wish to reject the latest pay offer.  However, we will continue to negotiate on our members’ behalf with the Scottish Government.

November Update – Latest NHS Pay Offer

The current position is that only 24.1% of IFON members have indicated they wish to reject the latest pay offer, however we will continue to negotiate on our members behalf with the Scottish Government.

October 2022

Feedback from IFON members, to our Chairman, show that the majority of IFON members wish to reject the current pay offer.  We have submitted the appropriate response on your behalf.  Our next step, which is not taken lightly, will be to issue ballot papers to members, on possible strike action.  It is imperative your contact details are up to date, please email us at

July 2022

It is with extreme sadness we have to announce that our founding member, Mrs Irenee O’Neill, a very prominent figure in the Trade Union movement, has passed away peacefully, after a long illness, at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital on Friday 24th June 2022.  The funeral service will take place on Thursday 7th July at Daldowie Crematorium, East Chapel at 2.00pm.

November 2019

Compensation for Breach of Data Protection

We have been contacted by some members recently for advice in relation to data protection breaches that they have experienced in the workplace.  Such breaches are unfortunately all too common and can be very distressing for those involved.  To assist members we have asked NewLaw Scotland to summarise the law surrounding GDPR and to provide specialist assistance to those members who may need it.

General Data Protection Regulation

The most significant result of the General Data Protection Regulation [GDPR] is that ‘data protection’ has become a household phrase. Most people are now aware of the existence of data protection law and many will be aware of their rights. While the rights to be informed about how your data is used, to have access to data held about you, and to fix any mistakes in the data have been well-publicised, the right to compensation for breach of data protection is less known.

The GDPR is very clear that a person who has suffered loss or damage as a result of an infringement (or breach) of the regulation has a right to compensation. This applies whether the damage is ‘material or non-material’, meaning that people still have a right to compensation for non-financial losses. The Data Protection Act 2018 specifically states that ‘non-material damage’ includes where distress has been caused by a breach of data protection. Claims for anxiety and reputational damage will also come under the right to compensation.

The bar for avoiding liability is set quite high. Data Controllers are organisations who hold your data and decide how it is to be used. Data Processors are organisations who carry out tasks using your personal data, perhaps on behalf of a Data Controller. Both can be required to pay compensation for breach of data protection. In order to avoid liability, they have to demonstrate that they were not ‘in any way responsible’ for the event which caused loss or damage.

What can you claim for?

If a breach of data protection causes you financial loss, then you can claim back that loss. The most common way that a breach of data protection can cause financial loss is by companies suffering data breaches which release the bank account details of their clients to cybercriminals. Criminals can then use this data to carry out identity fraud or credit card fraud.

If a breach of data protection damages your reputation, then you can claim damages in compensation. In 2008, a business owner sued an old friend of his for setting up a fake Facebook profile of him which contained statements regarding his sexual orientation and political and religious views, some of which were based on private data and some of which were made-up. The Court considered this a misuse of private information and a data breach. He was able to show that this damaged his business reputation and was awarded £22,000 in damages.

If a breach of data protection causes you anxiety or distress, then you can also claim damages in compensation. In 2016, a domestic abuse survivor successfully recovered £18,000 from the Kent Police force after they sent sensitive data from her phone to the lawyers for her ex-partner.  This did not cause her financial loss or reputational damage, but did cause substantial distress. Other scenarios that may cause distress can range from disclosure of medical data and publication of private photographs or recordings to voicemail hacking and unlawful surveillance.

There are limits to what can be claimed for. In one of the first claims for compensation under the GDPR, a man in Germany had his case dismissed when he attempted to sue for 500 e because he had received a spam email requesting that he sign up to an email newsletter. This was a result of a data protection breach disclosing his email address. The court declared that non-material damage does not cover trivial matters like this. However, he did receive 50 in an out-of-court settlement.

How much money can be recovered?

There are currently no guidelines for estimating damages for breach of data protection and this is a grey area. The amount of money that can be recovered will depend on the unique facts of each case. Someone who is distressed by having their personal medical records disclosed to the public is likely to receive more compensation than someone who is distressed by disclosure of payroll data.

The guidelines used by the Financial Ombudsman Service for valuing claims for breach of financial regulations may provide a useful reference point. ‘Moderate’ frustration and inconvenience is valued at up to £500, while ‘substantial’ distress and upset is valued at up to £2000. ‘Severe’ breaches which cause considerable long-term distress are valued at up to £5000 and ‘extreme’ breaches which have ‘an extreme and long-term impact’ are valued at over £5000. It is likely that most claims for disclosure of personal details will only involve moderate frustration and inconvenience, but it will depend on the exact circumstances.

It is arguable that claims for compensation for breach of data protection have been historically undervalued by the courts and judges may be more willing to consider larger sums following the implementation of the GDPR. However, due to the novelty of these claims, it is difficult to predict likely settlement figures.

Key Points

  • You can claim compensation for breach of data protection.
  • You can claim for both financial and non-financial losses.
  • Non-financial losses that can be claimed for include anxiety, distress, inconvenience, and reputational damage.
  • Trivial losses, such as the minor inconvenience of receiving a spam email, cannot be claimed for
  • It is difficult to say how much money can be recovered, but it is possible that settlement figures will be higher than they have historically been.

If you have been the victim of a data protection breach or would like some further information regarding your rights you can contact our panel firm NewLaw Scotland on 0333 003 0655 for free legal advice.


October 2019

Lanarkshire locals show their support on Mental Health Awareness Day – Thursday 10th October

Nichola Docherty, who has been a mental health nurse for 23 years, met with her local shop employee Dave to ask about his latest charity venture.

 “Dave is a popular local in my hometown and is known for his ongoing ventures to raise money for various charities. Leading up to the 10th October 2019, he and the team at our local Coop organised a raffle to raise awareness and money for Mind, inspire and SamH, leading mental health charities and support agencies.

Dave also requested locals send him words and lines which reflected their understanding and experience of mental health. He then made these the essence of a song he wrote to highlight mental health issues. His song ‘Be The Light’ captures the journey through dark times, but highlights there can be light, hope and a future.”

 Within our role in the caring profession, and sometimes on a personal level, we are privileged to work closely with those who come to us at their most difficult times. Charities such as Mind raise awareness and offer information, support and guidance to those who are effected by mental health, whether personally or as a friend or family member.

 A massive thankyou to Dave and the team at the Coop, the local community in my hometown and most importantly to all who support people in need when they request help on a daily basis.


 January 2019

Winners of our raffle have been notified.  Winning membership numbers: 0026, 0596, 2029, 2166, 2537, 2094.

December 2018

Christmas Raffle                               

We have been fortunate this year in our support from Thomas Tunnock Ltd. and A.G.Barr, whom we wish to thank for their generosity.  This Christmas therefore, we will enter membership numbers into a raffle.  Winners will be notified by email/tel. and winning membership numbers will be published on our website.  Good luck!

We would also like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year.  Thank you for your ongoing support.

August 2018


This has been issued by The Scottish Parliament. There is no indication as to when this will be paid but all Health Board’s will require to await instruction from the centre to effect payment and back payment.

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July 2018

NHS Scotland Pay Offer
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February 2018

Maintaining registration

Applying for readmission is to become the only route back onto the register

From November anyone who allows their registration to lapse will need to make an application for readmission to regain access to the register. This process can take between two and six weeks, depending on circumstances.

A nurse or midwife’s registration lapses from midnight on their expiry date if we have not received the documentation and fee in time to process them. We are now removing the short administrative window in which late submissions from nurses and midwives were processed without requiring them to apply for readmission. In these instances, the person’s registration was recorded as lapsed until their registration became effective again.

Although the vast majority of nurses and midwives keep their registration up to date, a small number of people have regularly allowed their registration to lapse. If they have continued to work, this contravenes the Code and is illegal. It can also cause difficulties for nurses and midwives with their employers, who require them to be registered.

We are making this change now to simplify the process and ensure consistency which will enable us to make the necessary changes to introduce a facility to give nurses and midwives the option to pay their registration fees in quarterly instalments. This means that we need to change our systems to introduce multiple payment points and these need to be calculated from a definitive renewal point.

An NMC Online account is the easiest and most immediate way to maintain registration, giving a nurse or midwife access to their registration record as well as sending them confirmation of their registration status following renewal.

January 2018

Exciting Bespoke Opportunity of Extended Legal Assistance to IFON members and their family
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November 2017

Attached is a response from Sean Neill at the Scottish Government. This is in response to our enquiry re. Paid as If at Work
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September 2017

Agenda for Change

Agenda for Change brought with it “Paid as If at Work” instruction to all Health Boards.  Specific software was available to the fourteen Scottish Health Boards to fulfil the instruction, and most Health Boards arranged training for their Senior Charge Nurses and Heads of Departments who would input the Scottish Standard Time System.

The instruction to all fourteen Health Boards was that monies due should be paid in October 2008. IFON members have now brought to our attention that some 10 years on, they have not been “Paid as If at Work”. The Health Boards which have failed to comply with the instruction are Highland Health Board and Grampian Health Board.

The Union is bringing this to the attention of the Scottish Executive for their immediate action and resolution for staff working in these Health Board areas.

July 2017

Attached is a response from Dave Watson at the Scottish Government. This is in response to our enquiry re. Nurses pay
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Mrs O’Neill writes to the First Minister’s Office,  on behalf of IFON members, regarding Nurses Pay.
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May/June 2017

Mrs O’Neil writes to the first minister, on your behalf, re. the ongoing lack of consideration to nurses pay.

The First minister has 20 days to respond, we will keep you updated.

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View News PDF 2

The Independent Federation of Nursing has lodged a complaint regarding not only one, but two, breaches of Data Protection Legislation involving two IFON members. A significant dossier has been compiled detailing the facts of these breaches and has been sent for the attention of the Professional Standards Authority. We will update members regarding the outcome of our complaint in due course.

It is pertinent to note The Nursing and Midwifery Council was fined £15,000 for a breach of the same Legislation in 2014…….Lessons should have been learned!

Members should be aware of the new method when making payment and renewing registration.  Members should ensure they have registered for an online NMC account. This will activate your registration reminder emails and allow you to make payment securely. It is important to ensure your personal details are updated each year. If these are inaccurate renewal of registration could be delayed.

If you are due for Revalidation, ensure all evidence has been collated. Information and tools to assist with your evidence of practise are available. Eportfolio is one tool which provides templates, allowing you to document and save your evidence online.

Following tireless effort and extensive negotiations a positive result has been achieved. All members who intimated they were happy for IFON to proceed on their behalf with an equal pay claim have now been notified of the details of the outcome of their claim. All successful members will receive their due amounts by the end of 2016.


August 2016

As you may know The Independent Federation of Nursing is in it’s 21st year this year. We continue to support and represent our members efficiently as we have since 1995.

We will endeavour to continue this support and are always willing to welcome new members to the Union, which represents nurses and nursing assistants all over Scotland.

We are now advertising within the Evening Times and would ask that you raise awareness of this to any nursing staff, and and newly qualified staff, who are looking for the best of service and representation. We would also welcome feedback at any time.

Any new members can apply online here at the website or contact us at the office.

July 2016

The union is delighted that the negotiations on behalf of IFON members for their Equal Pay Claim has now reached a satisfactory conclusion.  The members, on whose behalf IFON was dealing, can now look forward to the monies, won in their claim, to be paid to them.  The Chair of IFON Executive Committee, Elaine Shephard, said “we are delighted that we have been successful on behalf of IFON members”.

June 2016


Mrs O’Neill (General Secretary),myself (Kevin MacIver) and Mr. Patrick McQuillan attended The Nurses Day Event at the Fife the Campus of the University of Dundee.

We were invited along by the President of the Student Association to promote the work of The Independent Federation of Nursing.

The day was considered a great success and it was a pleasure to meet with nursing students at various stages of their training and development.

We thoroughly enjoyed our day and would especially like to thank Gary Lawson and the University for showing us hospitality at their Campus We look forward to welcoming any new members to IFON.

May 2016

REMINDER TO ALL Members – Our AGM is being held at the Ifon office this Tuesday 24th May at 6pm. All members welcome. Hope to see you there.

March 2015

IFON News / Info Update

Our Nursing Scotland magazine has been in circulation for a number of years now. We always have spare copies for prospective members so feel free to contact us if you would like a copy. Our Winter edition 2014/15 content list includes:

  •  Seasonal Messages from the Archbishop St. Andrews and Edinburgh and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland.
  • Our ongoing ‘Panto’ which is now a regular feature….purely fictitious of course!
  • A message from the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Support.

Articles from:

The National Autistic Society, Jill Stevenson
Energy Action Scotland, Norman Kerr
New Health Secretary, Shona Robison MSP
Glasgow Centre for Inclusive Living, Lilian Smith
Health and Care Services and Reforms by RCOP Communications Officer, Euan Duguid
Intermediate Care by Robert Murray of Greenfield Park Care Home
Ensure you are ‘Mesh Aware’ by Guest writer Marion Scott.

…and much more

We also have a regular Soapbox letters where our members and other can ‘offload’ about those things that really ‘get under their skin’! And on that note….

Our readers will be aware of the soapbox letter entitled ‘Dick Turpin NMC’ where the NMC registration fee increase is the subject of the letter and the lack of ‘value for money’ perceived by registrants. This edition has indeed stirred a response from the NMC who now wish to respond to the points raised therein. Our editorial team is dealing with this request and I am sure our Spring edition will include interesting content associated with the NMC response and/ or our members’ views.


February 2015

NMC – New Code of Conduct for all nurses from 31/03/2015

The Nursing and Midwifery Council has approved a new professional code for  registrants which it says will address behavioural issues as well as building on existing standards around practice. The nursing profession’s new practice and behavioural standards ‘bible’ has been refreshed, reinvigorated and modernised to reflect current issues in contemporary practice.

The new code is centred around four main topic areas – prioritise people, practise effectively, preserve safety and promote professionalism. It includes ‘new instructions’ to treat people with compassion and to ensure the physical, social and psychological needs of people are assessed and to exercise candour when any errors or harm have occurred. The brave new world of social media is also referenced as well the critical arena of raising concerns.

Of particular interest is the fact that the ‘Samaritan Acts’ (the provision that nurses and midwives intervene if an emergency occurs outside of their place of work) has been reinserted and after the NMC acknowledged it currently has no public policy on this area.

The NMC have also commited to publish a ‘public facing’ document about the Code that will support public expectation in the application of the contents for patients.

The NMC’s revision of its existing code – last updated in 2008 – is part of its response to the Francis report, which detailed the findings of the public inquiry into Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust.

Please click here to view/save or print the NMC – New Code of Conduct

October 2014

Equal Pay Update:

Around 100 IFON members submitted a claim for equal pay late 2006. Our Solicitor, with Council’s input have been pursuing this matter with the central legal office on behalf of our paying members. Only recently an agreement has been reached in principle that a positive outcome in terms of compensation payments may be forth coming for the period between 01/04/2006 and 30/09/2006. We will update members as more information is confirmed.