Council and school staff pay offer falls short

In response to the joint NJC (National Joint Council) pay claim for £3,000 or 10% (whichever is highest) on all pay points, local government employers have come back to the unions with the following offer for 2024-25:

  • With effect from 1 April 2024, an increase of £1,290 (pro rata for part-time and term-time-only employees*) to be paid as a consolidated, permanent addition on all NJC spinal column points. This represents a percentage increase between 5.77% (at the lowest point on the scale, point 2) and 2.50% (at the highest point on the scale, point 43).
  • With effect from 1 April 2024 an increase of 2.50 per cent on all allowances.

For example, a school Teaching Assistant working a 30-hour week, 39-week per year Term Time Only contract would receive in region of £780 per year.

Below you can discover the impact of the pay offer at your grade and spinal column point: what the offer is worth to you, including whether you gain or lose after the impact of inflation is taken into account.

Other elements of our claim were responded to as follows:

  • A two-hour reduction in the working week, with no detriment:
  • An additional day of annual leave:
  • A phased approach to reaching a minimum pay rate of £15 an hour:
  • Reviews of the gender, ethnicity and disability pay gaps:
    Discuss options for working together to capture pay gap information.

You can read the full claim here on our website and also view the full response and offer here.

It is clear that this offer falls short of the union’s reasonable claim. Many members will feel let down because their household bills continue to rise, whilst this offer falls short even of inflation for most members.

UNISON will now decide next steps over NJC pay. A meeting of UNISON reps on our NJC Committee will take place on Wednesday 22 May to decide whether and then how to ballot members so we can act in line with your views. It is highly likely that some form of ballot will follow, and the UNISON West Sussex branch will be in touch with its members then.

The West Sussex branch will be working hard to ensure that the NJC pay offer is honoured for members at WSCC on locally-determined pay grades (HAY, SMG, Agenda for Change). These grades historically follow the NJC award when settled.

If you’d like to be actively involved in the 2024-25 pay campaign, please join us as a workplace rep.

Please also sign up new members to the West Sussex branch, here.

Impact of the pay offer, including impact of inflation

NJC Pay Offer 2024-25 with RPI impact