HE executive rejects employers’ proposed pay freeze

Executive members ‘angered, dismayed and disappointed’

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UNISON’s higher education service group executive has made it clear that it rejects proposals from the employers for a pay freeze this year.

The new joint negotiating committee for higher education staff (New JNCHES) met earlier this month, following an agreement to end the delay to the pay negotiations caused by the lockdown.

At that meeting the unions called on the employers to make a full offer on pay-related elements of their claim, after arguing against the proposed freeze.

The employers insisted that under current financial circumstances they were not able to increase wages. They offered further meetings with New JNCHES to discuss other elements of the claim.

Meeting yesterday, UNISON’s HE service group executive agreed to continue to engage with the employers at future New JNCHES meetings, to push for a full and meaningful response on all elements of the pay claim.

“The service group executive is angered, dismayed and disappointed that the higher education employers are not making a pay offer for the forthcoming pay round,” said national officer Ruth Levin.

“University staff have worked so hard to keep universities going through lockdown, to ensure that students are supported and that research continues wherever possible.

“We will continue to push for a proper settlement for higher education staff on all aspects of the pay claim, including an end to pay inequality and fairer working conditions for all.”