Significant concessions from government in national dispute

A meeting took place last Friday 2 June with Jeremy Quin MP, the Minister for the Cabinet Office to discuss the ongoing dispute in the UK civil service and related areas.

At the meeting the Minister confirmed that the government will make significant concessions relating to pay, redundancy terms and job security.

This is the first time in our union’s history that members taking national action in the UK civil service and related areas have forced a government to make concessions on pay at national level resulting in considerable extra money for members.

Our strategy has involved the most industrial action in our union’s history, with 118 days of brilliantly supported targeted strike action in the first phase and 186 days in the second phase, alongside 3 days of national action.

Our national executive committee met today and agreed to congratulate all activists and members for their part in the national campaign.

The proposal

The key elements of the government’s proposal are:

  • A nonconsolidated lump sum of £1500 in recognition of cost of living pressures in 2022/23. The payment will be made by individual employers over the next few weeks following meetings with the union.
  • An increase in the headline pay remit figure from 2% to 4.5%, with an extra 0.5% for the lowest paid, for 2023/24.
  • A commitment to further talks on low pay and greater coherence of pay within the civil service.
  • The government will not take any action or make any changes to the Civil Service Compensation Scheme until 2025, which in effect will be after the next general election.
  • A commitment to further talks on strengthening redundancy avoidance measures through the jobs protocols, taking account of the changed world of work following the Covid-19 pandemic and the acceleration of use of new technology in that changed world.

This is a significant achievement for the union which, while short of our full claim, puts money in members’ pockets and brings parity of treatment with other public sector workers.

Next steps

Further discussions will follow with the Cabinet Office at the end of June in order to take stock of progress and ensure that all bargaining areas have committed to paying the £1,500 without conditions.

We have said that we do not want any area left behind and that payment must be made to all members, and this will inform the next steps in our campaign.

The NEC will meet again at the end of June following the further meeting with the Cabinet Office to consider the position, and the next steps for the national campaign. It is important that branches and groups hold members meetings and ensure the maximum discussion amongst members to ascertain their views. Planned targeted action this month will go ahead as planned. Any reballots for action are on hold pending the outcome of the delegated talks.

We will give members further information, including providing an FAQ on the government proposal on the website which will include how it affects members in the devolved administrations. Members will receive an email with a video explainer from the General Secretary. Please attend any meetings which will be organised in your branch.