Everything is going up – except our wages!

A special message for members at the University of Chichester

Back in June last year, University of Chichester UNISON members were encouraged to send a strong, clear message to the Government and employers that they needed to start listening to us: we cannot afford to keep taking these pay cuts!

RPI inflation in January is reported at 13.4% – and we all know this when we see our energy and food bills!

  • Wages are not keeping pace with inflation, now at its highest in 30 years!
  • Public sector workers on low pay are struggling with energy bills that have been hiked by 54%
  • National Insurance is UP
  • Food prices are UP, and
  • In the sixth wealthiest economy in the world, working people, the elderly and the most vulnerable in our society are having to choose between heating and eating.

The response to members from Government and employers was to tell you that there wasn’t any money available for a pay rise and hasn’t been for several years.  Some thought that post Covid, you should really be grateful that you still had a job because many people didn’t and had it far harder than you.

To add insult to injury, the Vice Chancellor Group at the University agreed a parking charge increase which totally wiped out the small pay increase that was received by members!

The University of Chichester Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year ending July 2021 have now been published and on page 53 there is a graph that shows that although there may not have been money in the budget for you to have a pay rise, there definitely was money available for the highest paid staff in the University to have quite a considerable pay rise.

As you can see the number of senior management employees moving into the £100,000+ bracket and so requiring reporting in our Annual Report increased from 2 to 5!

Here at UNISON we wanted to bring this to your attention so that if you are balloted for strike action again, you can make an informed decision and perhaps not feel guilty to ask for what you are worth.

Strike action is always a last resort, but we do believe that everyone should be treated equally.  If the highest paid staff can see an increase in their pay, then that should be applied across the board and you should not be brushed off and told there is no money for pay rises!