Disappointing 0.5% Pay Offer

fair dealThe Local Government Employers have moved quickly to make an offer for the 2009/10 pay round.  The offer is for 0.5%, which will be withdrawn if not accepted by 1 June.  There is no suggestion that the offer will be imposed - it is a case of accept it or get nothing.

A letter from the employers to the trade unions was sent today (6 April), claiming affordability as the reason behind the offer.  The initial reaction is one of disappointment and surprise - read the full press release from Unison here.  The Trade Union Side of the NJC Executive Committee will meet tomorrow (7 April) to formulate a response to the employers.

It is all the more disappointing because, once again, our offer is much lower than other areas of the public sector - including MPs own increases of 2.33%.  This is also lower than most councils have budgeted for - Norwich City Council allowed 2.5% as an inflationary factor for the annual pay award in February's budget.

This extremely low pay offer will have a significant effect on the lower paid in local government.  Times are hard but this offer will not make it any easier and at a time when there is a greater demand on vital public services.

What do you think about this offer, and what should we do about it?  Please send your thoughts to unison@norwich.gov.uk.