28 September 2022
The RCSLT recognises that its members are living and working in challenging times. Having battled through the pandemic, members are now facing a patient backlog in addition to an intensifying cost of living crisis.
The continued pressure has taken its toll. Members have shown enormous resilience and dedication during this challenging period.
The RCSLT continues to champion the profession and to lobby for speech and language therapy to be properly funded and resourced. Failings in government workforce planning have resulted in speech and language therapy becoming a shortage profession.
As we highlighted in our joint policy statement with the Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice (ASLTIP) on the English special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) Review, for too long, funding for speech and language therapy has not kept pace with demand.
While the RCSLT is not the union for the profession, and doesn’t facilitate negotiations on pay and conditions, we do talk regularly with Unite, (the primary union for SLTs) who are involved in these negotiations. If cuts and changes make services unethical or lacking an evidence base, we will always speak up for the profession and for service users.
As the professional body for SLTs, the RCSLT is here to support members, providing clinical guidance and best practice to help them to succeed in their careers. We continue to push for the removal of barriers that prevent SLTs from accessing the continuing professional development (CPD) they need to develop clinical specialisms and to progress in leadership roles.
We also bring the profession together through events, hubs, Clinical Excellence Networks (CENs), and professional networks, enabling members to support each other and share learning.
We recently made membership free for student members to support our future SLTs on their journey to becoming fully qualified.
To ease some of the financial pressures, members can claim tax relief on their membership fees, which can be back dated for up to four years. You can find out more about how to do this on the HMRC website. This also applies to your HCPC registration fee.
For any members who are struggling financially, the RCSLT has a hardship fund that offers assistance, normally up to £500. Details on how to apply are available in the member’s area of the website.
We are disappointed that the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) plan to significantly increase fees