Members of all three local government unions have voted to accept a pay offer put forward by the Local Government Association.
Local government and school support workers had been offered just 1%, with slightly more for the lowest paid to bring them above the level of the new National Minimum Wage in March. However following a strike on 10 July and a threatened further walkout in October, the LGA made an improved offer.
The proposals cover the period from 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2016.
A decisive majority, 64.35% of UNISON members, voted to accept the pay proposals on a 19.77% turnout. GMB and UNITE members also voted overwhelmingly to accept the pay proposals.
While accepting the offer, UNISON has made it clear to the LGA that it falls far below the aspirations in the 2014-15 pay claim and what you – our members – deserve. It is a further pay cut for members providing vital local services, struggling to make ends meet in the face of massive job cuts and attacks to their terms and conditions. We also stressed the urgent necessity to strengthen collective bargaining in local government and schools and called on the Local Government Association to move quickly with us to tackle the many serious issues facing our members.
All three unions have made it clear that they will continue to campaign for fair pay and conditions for local government and school workers, strengthen the collective bargaining machinery covering local government and schools and move quickly to jointly tackle other important issues facing their members with the Local Government Association.
UNISON Head of Local Government Heather Wakefield said:
“Members covered by the National Joint Council for Local Government have the lowest pay in the public sector and have suffered significant attacks on their conditions of work in recent years. We will continue to campaign for the Living Wage* to become the minimum rate of pay in local government and for a commensurate increase for all other NJC employees, to reflect the invaluable work that our members do to keep vital local services running.”
GMB National Secretary Brian Strutton said:
“1.5 million council workers and school staff have taken a pragmatic decision to accept a two-year deal which is worth around 2.35% on average and up to 9.6% for the lowest paid. That puts the 2014 pay dispute to bed but there are still serious financial challenges ahead for local government services and our members who provide them.”
UNITE National Officer Fiona Farmer said:
“Following a long campaign on pay, Unite members have voted overwhelmingly to accept the two year proposal.”
* The Living Wage is £7.85 and £9.15 in London
NJC Pay 14 Campaign Bulletin
Click here to read UNISON’s lastest NJC pay campaign bulletin which details the breakdown of votes and outlines how the union’s pay campaign will continue.