You may have heard about or seen communications from UNISON and other trade unions over recent days regarding the current pay dispute. A proposal has been discussed but no formal offer has been made.
Coventry Unison agrees that the messages currently coming out from various sources appear to be contradictory and confusing which is why we want to update you of where we stand.
Where are the pay negotiations at the moment?
At this point, there is no firm offer as the LGA has not put the proposal to Councils. Therefore, as it stands, UNISON nationally is not in a position to consult members until a firm offer is made in writing that the employer has signed up to.
At a recent regional briefing, UNISON branches were informed that our sister unions may have a slightly different position to ourselves, however, we have a firm conference policy that says we cannot consult our members until we have a firm offer in writing. A proposal does not constitute an offer.
Is this proposal a better offer than the 1%?
At present this is only a proposal. However, there are a couple of things you need to bear in mind:
The lump sum for the 9 month period in 2014/15 amounts to less than 1 years back pay on the original 1% offer.
The proposed 2.2% on basic pay from 1 January 2015 is low and does nothing to compensate for years of pay cuts.
UNISON recognises the fact that the LGA have come forward with a proposal. However, they need to come forward with a firm offer before our members can decide to accept or reject. Some other things to reflect on:
UNISON members in local government have faced year upon year of pay cuts which needs to be addressed.
Jobs losses and service cuts will mean more work for those left behind. Your pay needs to reflect the skilled work you do.
Your pay has a direct affect on your pension which means negotiating a fair pay rise will have longer term implications on your finances.
UNISON believes there is sufficient money for a decent pay rise. Billions in council surpluses would meet a fair rise on their own.
So what happens now?
We are waiting for a firm offer to be received from the Local Government association (LGA).
*UNISON nationally will continue to build for the industrial action planned for 14 October.
At this point the strike will go ahead.
We will keep you informed of developments as soon as we have them.