Members will recall that in February the national employers offered a 2% pay rise which was rejected by UNISON.
The national employers have come back with a latest offer of 2.75%. There has also been an offer of an additional one day‘s annual leave. This would impact only on members receiving the current WSCC leave allowance of 23 days, which is those staff working at Grades 1-7 who have not yet achieved 5 years’ length of service.
UNISON has written back to the local government employers. You can read the details of the offer and response in the letters exchanged below. In sum, UNISON (by far the largest of the three nationally recognised local government unions and the effective lead for these negotiations*) has:
- not recognised this offer as a final offer;
- asked to join the employer’s call on national government to provide further funding for pay;
- asked for further discussion on the revised offer made.
What you deserve?
You, UNISON members, deserve far more than 2.75%. You are the heroes keeping communities safe and our most vulnerable residents looked after. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought this into sharp relief: the real essential workers in society are those in our branch – not the city financiers and speculators. It is time for wider society, and the government, to recognise this.
We will keep members informed of developments, and expect at some stage for an offer to be put to members in a consultative ballot so members can decide on next steps.
*UNISON is however the only trade union recognised at WSCC for staff who are not qualified teachers or fire fighters.
Not impacted by NJC?
If you are a public service hero too, doing your bit to support residents and vulnerable people at this trying time, but not covered by NJC pay and wondering where your pay rise is – there is a solution. Care workers have suffered years of privatisation and fragmentation, meaning that often trade union density of membership is not sufficient to force employers to bargain on pay. You can change this!
If you join UNISON in your workplace in good numbers, the branch can work to secure recognition on pay in your workplace, using available statutory processes if necessary. We can then fight for a decent pay rise for you and your co-workers. We are doing just that in a collection of care homes in West Sussex right now where members have joined UNISON in sufficient numbers for the branch to be able to lodge a statutory request for recognition. Contact the branch for more details.