The one per cent offer for local government workers in England smacks of hypocrisy, given the runaway pay of some council chief executives, Unite, the country’s largest union, said today (Wednesday 24 April).
Unite national officer for local government Fiona Farmer said: “In the last three years there has been a pay freeze, with the result that earnings for the average employee have slumped by 16 per cent.
“Yet, when you contrast this with the excessive pay of such council bosses as Hammersmith and Fulham’s chief executive Derek Myers on £225,000-a-year, there is a strong whiff of hypocrisy. Don’t do as I do – but do as I say. The gravy train for some top bosses is steaming ahead.”
The Local Government Association has offered one per cent from 1 April 2013 and the deletion of the bottom band of the pay spine, which would help the lowest paid, for local government employees in England.
Unite, which has 80,000 local council members, will be meeting with the other unions on 7 May to discuss the offer. Its members will be asked, in a consultative ballot, for their view.
Fiona Farmer said: “The offer is paltry given that local council employees provide vital services in their local community on a daily basis.
“We will be considering the offer in the context of the savage cuts in local government which have seen 200,000 job losses since the coalition’s austerity programme started to bite.”
Unite will launch its Fair Pay campaign on 2 May to raise the standard for better pay and conditions for local authority workers – two-thirds of whom earn less than £21,000-a-year.
For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.