UNISON has rejected the 2% initial pay offer made by the local government employers.
Back in last summer, UNISON submitted the pay claim for 2020/21.
The claim would mean that £10 an hour would be the lowest rate for council staff from this April. Everyone else would receive a 10% wage rise.
UNISON has now called on the local government employers to think again and come up with a better offer so talks can continue as soon as possible.
Commenting on the talks, UNISON head of local government Jon Richards said:
“Council staff run vital local services at the heart of communities across the three nations. They’ve done this through thick and thin, as cuts and redundancies have made their jobs ever more challenging. Today’s offer is more than disappointing.
“It’s high time teaching assistants, care workers, librarians and park keepers were rewarded for their sterling efforts during the difficult decade of austerity.
“The chancellor must give councils the cash in the Budget to fund a proper pay rise. Otherwise experienced staff will be lost as they seek better paid work elsewhere and there’ll be barely anyone left to deliver local services.”
UNISON West Sussex branch secretary Dan Sartin said: “This offer does nothing to address the decade of savage cuts our members have suffered – wages have been devalued by 22% over the past ten years. It is deeply disappointing.
“This is the first test on how the new government will treat public sector workers and the offer tabled today is woefully short of a proper decent wage. Local government workers are the backbone of our communities; overwhelmingly part-time and female.
“UNISON is now seeking a fresh meeting to allow employers to table a dramatically improved offer.”