General election: May falters during challenge over record on public services : The Guardian

PM confronted by nurse over issue of low pay in Question Time special, while Jeremy Corbyn is questioned over Trident and national security.

Theresa May came under sustained pressure over the Conservative party’s record on public sector pay, mental health services and social care in a combative election edition of BBC1’s Question Time broadcast less than a week before polling day.

The prime minister faced a string of awkward questions from members of the public, including a challenge from a nurse, Victoria Davey, who left May faltering after confronting her over the 1% pay increase received by NHS staff.

May said she recognised the hard work people did in the health service but said her party had taken the difficult decision of enforcing pay restraint. “I’m being honest with you saying we will put more money in, but there isn’t a magic money tree that we can shake to get everything we want,” she said.

The prime minister claimed wages in the NHS had increased, to which a man in the audience shouted that there had been a real-terms salary drop of 14% since 2010, adding: “So don’t tell us we’re getting a pay rise.”

One woman from the audience became emotional as she described emerging from a fitness-for-work test in tears after being asked about her suicide attempts. “I’m not going to make any excuses for the experience you’ve had,” said the prime minister.

READ MORE : THE GUARDIAN

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