Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1008/27906
PCS members in Land Registry demand 6% pay rise
Dave Lunn, vice-president, PCS Land Registry group (personal capacity)
PCS members in HM Land Registry (HMLR) group have lodged a 6% pay increase claim with departmental management.
This demand largely echoes the national campaign, but goes further than the 5% claim as HMLR pay has not only been pinned back by ten years of Tory wage restraint, but has also fallen behind comparable areas of the civil service.
The 6% claim seeks to address this as well as overtaking (on pay scale) issues which were brought about the employer's decision to 'buy out' contractual pay progression.
The key demands of our claim are:
- 6% on all pay points, or £1,200 - whichever is the greater - in order to achieve parity with the average pay of other government departments,
- for all allowances to be increased by 6%,
- for a living wage of at least £10 an hour,
- that all apprentices be paid at the rate for the job rather than a reduced apprentice rate,
- the abolition of 'non-consolidated' payments to help fund these meaningful consolidated and pensionable increases
- and where we do not have 'spot rates' for grades, to reduce pay progression steps.
Last year during pay talks, HMLR management was keen to publicly point out that it wanted to and could afford to pay us more.
It argued that government pay restraint prevented it doing so. We will be very clear in our upcoming pay negotiations that we had huge support from our members for the national pay campaign.
Should HMLR management fail to go back to the government and make the strong case for a pay rise, in line with our claim, it will make it crystal clear to our members that the responsibility for continuing unacceptable pay lies not only with the government, but also with our direct employer: HMLR.
In these circumstances, we would be obliged to consult and potentially ballot our members for action specifically within HMLR. This allows us to put management's professed desire to pay us more to the test.
We have a proud history and tradition of bargaining, campaigning and organising in our group. We have reps in every workplace and 99% of the work we do is lay rep-led. Importantly none of these aspects of our work are done in isolation.
We have achieved results through our bargaining: positive changes to the sickness absence policy and hundreds of fixed-term posts being made permanent. And through campaigning: defeating privatisation twice as well as defeating plans to close 75% of our offices.
These are the reasons why we are able to organise effectively and recruit and retain members. Our members see the union as being relevant and effective and they play an active part in our campaigns and in recruiting new members.
For us to be able to make progress on pay, it is really important that the national campaign does not lose momentum.
In parallel to the campaign we run in HMLR group, we need maximum pressure placed upon the government across as many areas of the civil service as possible.
It is also vital that the future direction of the national campaign is member and activist-led, with groups being able to coordinate campaigns and action wherever possible.
This must not be a top-down or one-size-fits-all approach imposed on different groups.
Our members have suffered long enough and we are ready to do everything within our power to try and deliver the sort of pay rise they need and deserve.
In The Socialist 5 September 2018:
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