Sudden Improvement in Pay Proposals … Or Just More Deception?

We congratulate our colleagues in the Police Service Group for their decision to ballot members for industrial action against a 1% pay offer.

This replicates the decisions taken last year in Higher Education and this year (so far) in Health, the Food Standards Agency and Local Government in Scotland.

This in a background of ongoing disputes over pay and conditions in the civil service and teaching unions.

It also replicates the decisions earlier this year from UNISON’s NJC Committee, after finally finding some teeth following years of inaction whilst our members living standards went into freefall.

Which makes it all the more baffling to understand why a majority on that same Committee have reverted to toothless type and moved to consult on “proposals” which, for the vast majority, are worth LESS than 1% this year and just 0.19% more over two years than we would have got by sitting on our backsides without even putting in a pay claim.

Or is it really that baffling?

To those with any knowledge or experience of some of our national leadership (lay and paid) this is looking more and more like a manufactured surrender that has less and less to do with our members pay, but lots to do with two elections scheduled for 2015.

A General Election in the wider world, and a General Secretary Election in the UNISON world.

Do we really think it is possible that a relatively small group of people in our union would put the interests of members’ pay and living standards a distant second to their own internal and external motivations?

It appears so.

If it looks like a sell out, smells like a sell out, walks like a sell out and talks like a sell out, its probably a sell out.

All we can do  – in between UNISON elections that is – is put our energies into getting the biggest rejection of these proposals that we can.

We now see a new level of deceit witnessed today in national Pay Bulletin 53 where a final column has been added to the pay proposals which includes one off payments which are not consolidated and then ‘calculated’ as a % of pay in 2013 to suggest a completely misleading % increase in ongoing future pay.

This compete distortion in presenting the offer has never been suggested before, even though it is now two weeks after the proposals were made and after a full week of the consultation period we were told started last Thursday!

This simply shows the desperation amongst some elements in the national leadership to undermine our own members campaigning and fighting for fair pay.

We are not alone in opposing this.

Branches up and down the country are aghast at the scale of the intended surrender and the level of deception involved. Even some influential Branches in the other unions are now openly campaigning for a rejection.

If you are a member of another UNISON Branch that has voted to reject the proposals and requisition a Special Local Government Conference and have not yet let us know please do so and we will display a list to date which will be updated regularly.

You can email us at or call us on 0161 254 7500.

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