UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

NHS Pay - battle lines drawn‏

THE NHS Chief Executive David Nicholson has thrown the gauntlet down to health unions on pay for the settlement period 2011/12 onwards:

“The big issue is pay. Pay is critical. Every 1 per cent on pay is 10,000 jobs – and there is a pretty straightforward trade-off between the number of jobs, the level of pay awards and the numbers of trainees, from doctors to nurses, that we can take in to the system”.

The FT reports on plans for ‘massive pay restraint, possibly below the 1 per cent cap on public sector pay’ announced earlier this month in the pre-Budget report.

Holding the Government and the NHS employers to the third year of a long term pay deal – in economic circumstances radically different from when the deal was struck - has been a significant achievement by UNISON. The employers have complained that implementing year 3 increase will be ‘very challenging’ and 10% of NHS employers took a stand against implementation of year 3 due to ‘financial constraints’.

UNISON health service group conference in April will be the first opportunity for the union to respond to the future challenge on pay. The preliminary agenda will be published on 15 January 2010 and it expected that pay will be prominent with strong submissions from the SGE and Scottish region.