Local Government Employers today made its expected 2 per cent pay offer to council staff across England, prompting immediate criticism from trade unions.
The offer, which the employers say is in line with the government’s 2 per cent inflation target was made in response to public sector unions’ demand for a 5 per cent rise in 2007-8.
The employers’ side chair, Brain Baldwin, said: “The key aspect of this offer is to make sure that any pay settlement is affordable to the taxpayer and councils while at the same time making sure that local government continues to be an attractive place to work in.”
Local authorities have been under pressure from the Treasury to stick to a 2 per cent pay settlement.
But Unison’s head of local government Heather Wakefield said the offer was effectively a pay cut as the retail price index measure of inflation, which is broader than the government’s consumer price index measure, today increased to 4.6 per cent.
She said: “This is a paltry pay award which will drive down the morale of staff further.”
Unison’s Heather Wakefield on the local government pay claim