Chancellor’s call for more regional pay receives mixed reception

Local authority leaders have welcomed Gordon Brown’s
plans, outlined in his recent budget, for more regional and local
pay flexibility.

However, such measures should be implemented within the
framework of national pay bargaining.

Commenting on the chancellor’s statement, Brian Baldwin,
chairperson of the National Joint Council for Local Government
Services, said: “We introduced flexible, local pay determination
within a national framework in 1997, so that local authorities can
respond to their local labour market conditions”

He also said that local government employers will submit
evidence to the new local government Pay Commission that a national
framework should continue, but that more local flexibility is

But local government union Unison has warned against any attempt
to weaken or break up national pay bargaining.

Heather Wakefield, Unison’s national secretary for local
government, said: “Councils are facing complex labour market
factors, which cannot be solved by adopting regional
“In Sheffield and Rotherham, the councils can’t recruit care
staff, social workers, or cleaners because they are in direct
competition with a number of call centers that pay.”

She added that Unison’s evidence to the local government Pay
Commission will call for more effective national bargaining, which
rewards all staff and doesn’t subject them to a regional tug of war
for staff.

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.