Laura Sharman 17 April 2020

Unions slam 'woefully low' council pay offer

Unions slam woefully low council pay offer image

The Government should provide extra funding to give council workers a 'proper' pay rise during the pandemic crisis, trade unions have said.

Unison, Unite and GMB have branded the 2.75% pay offer from the National Employers as 'woefully low' arguing it fails to recognise the efforts of local government staff in delivering frontline services during the lockdown.

They are urging the employers to write a joint letter with them to Government to fund a top up to reward council and school support staff.

Head of local government at Unison, Jon Richards, said: 'The LGA say they’d like to give council staff more but it’s all cash-strapped local authorities can afford.

'Although an increase on its previous offer of 2%, it still falls well short of what’s both needed and deserved. Staff running key local services are amongst the lowest paid workers in the country and have seen their pay drop substantially in recent years.'

GMB national secretary, Rehana Azam, added: 'We rejected the initial opening offer of 2% as it was woefully low – and that was before the seismic shift caused by coronavirus.

'Right now, our most precious resources are our key workers. They are getting us through this pandemic with their invaluable and selfless dedication in numerous critical roles. That’s why we are so disappointed the LGA hasn’t made a strong enough case before tabling a 2.75% offer to government to fund a key workers allowance.'

In a nutshell: the 2020-21 local government pay claim

One year on, councils will be central to recovery image

One year on, councils will be central to recovery

After an extraordinary year, council staff are exhausted, worn down and facing further cuts, says Heather Jameson. But she has no doubt they will continue to rise to the challenge 'whether it is in an office, at home or on a laptop anywhere'.
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