The long awaited Treasury Pay Guidance for 2018 has now been received and confirms continued restraint on pay awards for civil servants.
The continued pay restraint comes despite public pronouncements that the pay cap had been lifted, and higher awards being offered in other areas of the public sector.
While the 1% pay cap is no longer stringently imposed, as PCS announced following discussions with the Cabinet Office, departments have only been funded for 1% increases again this year and any increases “within the new range of between 1 and 1.5%“ are “subject to affordability” and therefore must come from within existing budgets.
PCS have been clear throughout the National Pay Campaign that our demand for 5% or £1200, whichever is the greater, needed to be achieved with additional funding from the Treasury and not through further cuts to jobs, offices and services to the public. It is not acceptable to ask hard working PCS members in the Civil Service to again bear the brunt of ideological austerity measures, and for any slight increases to be offset against cuts to staffing or services.
While negotiations can now begin between the unions and DWP the Treasury remit falls well short of our expectations for our members.
PCS Pay Ballot
Members have been voting in their thousands already since the pay ballot opened last week and the feedback from branches has been positive so far.
The latest article by DWP, and on the back of the previous July pay announcement - which was only overturned following PCS members angry response and your negotiators insistence that DWP honoured the pay awards already agreed in Employee Deal - will do nothing to reassure members that DWP is able or willing to address our serious concerns regarding your pay.
Earlier this year nearly 70% of staff, who completed the DWP Wellbeing Survey, stated they had experienced financial difficulty in the last twelve months, and we know members often have to resort to borrowing money through various financial sources, to top up their low salaries, due to cost of living increases.
It is for these reasons that PCS has launched the national pay ballot and members in DWP are urged to continue to vote YES and return your ballot paper to increase the pressure on the Cabinet Office, the Treasury and the Government.
PCS is clear that our members are worth so much more than this and we are determined to make the above institutions value you as highly as our union does.
PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka in response to yesterday’s news has said: “This is just another example of the government's broken pay promises. The Treasury didn’t even have the courtesy to discuss the pay remit with PCS before publishing it. They have even postponed two recent planned pay meetings. It is quite frankly insulting that the government continues to think that its own staff are worth so little and are expected to continue to struggle on another paltry pay rise. It is also very disappointing. This is yet another reason for PCS members to vote yes in our pay ballot and take action to force this government to recognise the vital work our members do by paying them a pay decent pay rise.”
There has never been a more important time to vote in a ballot and beat the 50% threshold the government has imposed on unions in industrial action ballots. There has also never been a more opportune time to show a weak government the strength of members and the importance of the work we do.
It is absolutely vital that members within DWP vote in this ballot, so if you haven’t already done so please return your ballot paper today. If you have already voted you can still play an important part in the campaign by convincing your colleagues to return their ballot paper and by encouraging non-members that now is the time to get involved and join PCS.
Now is the time for us all to stand up for what we deserve.
VOTE YES IN THE PCS PAY BALLOT!