BRADFORD MPs have expressed their anger after the care minister said students working in our hospitals are "not deemed to be providing a service".

The comments were made in response to a letter from a student nurse - it later went viral on Twitter with thousands of students who stepped up to help during the pandemic writing their own letters.

One of those student nurses was Liv Massey, a student nurse who lives in West Yorkshire, who described the care minister Helen Whatley's comments as "another kick in the teeth".

The T&A approached the care minister for both comment and an interview but has received no response so far.

As part of the Telegraph & Argus' Support Our Student Nurses campaign, we asked local politicians what they thought about the comments.

Naz Shah (Labour, Bradford West) said Ms Whateley's words were "insults" to those who have worked on the frontline.

The MP told the Telegraph & Argus: "Student nurses have been providing vital services to the NHS, even before COVID-19. This current pandemic allowed many of us to become even more grateful of all the work, all those in the NHS do. Such comments are insults to hard-working student nurses."

While Judith Cummins MP (Labour, Bradford South) said: "The Health Minister's reply to this student nurse is extremely poor, especially given the tremendous work student nurses have been doing on the frontline of the covid-19 pandemic.

"I urge the Government to recognise this and give student nurses the financial support they deserve."

In May, Mrs Cummins asked if the Government had any plans to lift their tuition fees as a thanks but was "disappointed" by the response.

Mrs Whately wrote back: "There are currently no plans to reimburse tuition fees and students will continue to be required to pay fees for their final term.

"The Government is extremely grateful to all students who are choosing to opt in to work in the National Health Service during this extremely difficult time and will be ensuring all students who do so are rewarded fairly for their hard work.

"Nursing students who opt in will receive a salary and automatic NHS pension entitlement at the appropriate band. They will also still receive their student maintenance loan and Learning Support Fund payments."

The latest comments have been described as an "unfortunate phrase" by Philip Davies (Conservative, Shipley).

The MP said: “It was an unfortunate phrase used by the Minister as student nurses have clearly been providing a wonderful service for the NHS and its patients as part of their training.

“That is why I have been happy to support the T&A campaign on this issue”.

The Telegraph & Argus has launched a campaign to scrap tuition fees for student nurses, midwives and paramedics on the frontline. Thousands of student nurses, midwives and paramedics have been thrown into the frontline, helping to make up for a national shortfall in NHS nursing numbers.

Some are unpaid; many without access to the bursary fund and graduating with huge student debt. If you wish to sign the petition, visit