Statement from Brian Strutton, GMB National Secretary – Public Services
5 June 2015
LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND SCHOOL STAFF – NEW PAY CAMPAIGN UNDERWAY
Following on from the agreement between GMB and the other local government unions to open the 2016/17 pay round as early as possible, the trade union side of the National Joint Council has agreed a joint claim which has been formally submitted to the national employers as follows –
1. Deletion of NJC and all local pay points which fall below the level of the UK Living Wage (and deletion of GLPC pay points below London Living Wage) and a flat rate increase of £1 per hour on all other pay points.
2. Retention and protection of Green Book Part 2 terms and conditions.
3. Fair treatment for school support staff through a joint review of term time working.
The first item is the headline pay demand and in effect it means ‘pay the Living Wage or give a £1 an hour pay rise, whichever is greater’. This is consistent with our claim for last years’ negotiations and since GMB began its Living Wage campaign in 2013 nearly half of all Councils now pay it. The official Living Wage is £7.85 an hour (£9.15 in London).
The second item is to establish a base line that makes clear our national agreement is not up for grabs. As well as the overwhelming majority of Councils, there are thousands of other employers like academy schools, charities, housing associations and contractors that use the Green Book – it is the essential set of terms and conditions for the whole of the local government sector.
The third item is specific to school support staff whose term-time contractual arrangement has long been seen as a disadvantage compared to other groups – pay is reduced for term time workers on the grounds that they have longer holidays but on the other hand they have no choice over those holidays. It’s high time this was sorted out properly and fairly.
In submitting our claim we are very aware that local authority budgets are tight and we hope that by initiating discussions early it will give all employers time to plan to meet our claim. I expect we will get a response next month and I will communicate this to you along with the next steps in our campaign.
National Secretary – Public Services SectioN
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Contact: Brian Strutton
GMB National Office
22 Stephenson Way, London NW1 2HD
Posted: 8th June 2015