Council pay deal to be implemented despite Unite opposition

A two year pay deal for local government workers will now go ahead despite Unite refusing the approve the offer.

Unite has maintained its opposition to the deal, which it criticises for only offering a ‘paltry’ one per cent pay rise to the majority of employees.

However, GMB and Unison have both agreed to the del and Unite has conceded that the deal will go ahead as ‘it is part of a collective bargaining process and the majority of the other staff side unions had agreed to the offer’.

The pay deal will now be implemented by local authorities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland from April 2016.

Fiona Farmer, Unite national officer for local government, said: “Unite, the fightback union, was determined not to sign up to the paltry two-year pay offer from the employers.

“In a full nationwide postal ballot, our members overwhelmingly rejected the offer as it fell well short of our expectations on pay and failed to address the real loss of earnings our members have suffered since 2010. It does nothing to restore the 20 per cent real cut in earnings that have eroded our members’ pay since 2010, as well as the 25 per cent reduction in the workforce, meaning that those remaining are working more for less. We are entering into the realm of poverty wages.

“We do, however, recognise the collective majority decision of the other unions and respect that this offer will now be implemented across local authorities. Pay in local government is the lowest across all public services and Unite will continue to campaign to remove the unjustified one per cent cap on pay, actively fight back against the Tories’ cuts and tackle councils which refuse to pay the ‘real living wage’. A total of 60 per cent of the 1.3 million local government workforce in the three countries covered are earning less than average annual wage of £27,600.”

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