Construction unions Ucatt, Unite and GMB have described a pay offer as derisory and have accused employers of treating workers with disrespect and derision.
The employers made their derisory offer in pay talks on Tuesday 29 October for the Construction Industry Joint Council (CIJC) agreement. Around 500,000 workers are covered by some aspect of the CIJC agreement.
Since 2008 workers covered by the CIJC have seen their pay fall by 12 per cent in real terms. The construction industry is expected to grow quickly over the next four years. Despite this, employers proposed a multi-year pay offer which would have further reduced workers’ pay in real terms.
Pay rates for construction workers working under the CIJC are lower than the other major industrial agreements in the construction industry.
Steve Murphy, general secretary of construction union Ucatt, said: “Employers are treating their workers with derision and disrespect with an offer which would further cut workers’ pay in real terms. Workers are angry and will no longer accept poverty pay. The employers must make a realistic offer when talks resume.”
John Allott, Unite national officer for construction, said: “Our members will be furious that the employers are offering them a pay cut in real terms. Construction workers are already struggling to keep up with the rising costs of living and paying their bills. This pay offer does nothing to reward our members’ contribution and we believe that the employers are able to offer more.”
Phil Whitehurst, GMB national officer for construction, said: “The offer put on the table by the employers shows utter contempt for their employees, this attempt after pay freezes and low settlements in the past, to embark further in the race to the bottom on wages, terms and conditions for our members, has been derailed. Construction workers will no longer accept any more crumbs off the employers' table.”
Pay talks are set to resume next month.
For further information contact Barckley Sumner on 07802 329 235 or Unite press officer Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931315.
Notes to editors:
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.