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GMB Yes To 2013 Council Pay Offer

Thursday, July 4, 2013

GMB Members In Local Government In England, Wales And Northern Ireland Vote To Accept Pay Offer From 1st April 2013

There is still a long way to go to restore living standards for front line council staff that provide essential services and protect the most vulnerable members of our communities says GMB.

220,000 GMB members whose pay is set by the National Joint Council for Local Government in England, Wales and Northern Ireland have voted in a secret postal ballot to accept a 1% pay offer from 1 April 2013.

A total of 1.5 million workers are covered by this deal which was an improvement on an initial offer of 1% with detrimental changes to terms and conditions attached. See notes to editors for copy of employers letter with offer.

In addition under the offer those staff on the lowest pay scale will see a further pay rise of 1.4% to lift them above the national minimum wage.

GMB voting figures are as follows: 91.2% to accept; 8.8% to reject; turnout 26.5%.

Brian Strutton, GMB National Secretary said "GMB members have clearly said that they are willing to accept the local government pay offer which is worth a little over 1% on the pay bill.

I'm pleased that we have managed to break the pay freeze that had been imposed for three years. But there is still a long way to go to restore living standards for front line council staff that clean our streets, empty our bins, look after our children in schools and nurseries, our elderly at home and in care homes, and protect the most vulnerable members of our communities.

So I call on every local authority to budget for a decent pay rise in 2014 and show some respect for their hard working staff."

End

Contact: Brian Strutton 07860 606 137 or GMB press office 07921 289880

Notes to editors

1 Copy of letter from employers

To Trade Union Side Secretaries NJC for Local Government Services 24 April 2013

LOCAL GOVERNMENT PAY 2013

At the meeting of the NJC Executive on 28 March, the Employers agreed to consider further their response to your Side’s pay claim for 2013. Members have always recognised the difficult context in which both Sides are seeking to reach an agreement this year and have been mindful of the impact on the workforce of there having been no national pay award since April 2009.

The Employers have always believed that the NJC is the body best placed to deal with relevant employment issues arising from the huge amount of change that local government is undergoing, and that is set to continue for the foreseeable future. It is for this reason that we have, since February last year, been seeking to engage you in discussions on how we can best respond to the issues affecting your members and the wider workforce. A key element of meeting this challenge is to ensure that employees’ pay, terms and conditions are fit for purpose and fair to both employees and employers.

The Employers are therefore extremely disappointed that the unions have been unable to consider even the most minor elements of reform to some terms and conditions proposed by the Employers.

Therefore, after careful consideration and extensive consultation, the Employers are now in a position to make the following final offer that you should understand reflects councils’ frustration that no reform has been achieved:

·    1.0% on all pay points with effect from 1 April 2013

·    the deletion of pay point 4 with effect from 1 October 2013

In light of the unions’ refusal to engage in discussions about reform the Employers now believe that there is little real prospect of being able to achieve any reform to terms and conditions at national level in the foreseeable future and consider it highly probable that the NJC will find itself in a situation whereby future national negotiations are held solely on the issue of pay, unless you significantly alter your stance. Consequently, in the absence of such a move by the unions, the Employers will consider it their responsibility to begin concentrating their efforts on assisting councils in whatever way possible to achieve reform locally.

It should be stressed, however, that the Employers value highly the significant joint work that has taken place at national level on issues such as the Local Government Pension Scheme, the pay and career development for social workers, the transfer of public health staff and the updating of the NJC JE Scheme and hope that both Sides can continue to work together on such matters in the future.

The Employers will shortly be seeking the views of councils and regional employers on the future ability of the national machinery to reform terms and conditions. We will of course have further discussions with you in due course.

Further to previous conversations, I can confirm that as we have consulted extensively with councils prior to making this final offer we do not envisage carrying out a further similar exercise. However, we understand that you may wish to put the Employers’ final offer to your members for consultation; if so, we would be grateful if you could advise the anticipated timescales involved.

Yours sincerely,

Employers’ Secretary

Note 2 The deletion of pay point 4 with effect from 1 October 2013 impacts on 20,400 staff and gives those full time an additional £167 on their annual salary.

 

 

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