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UCEA and trade unions continue talks in 2012-13 pay negotiations

Discussions and further exploration of the pay claim continued today as UCEA and the HE trade unions* met for the second round of HE pay negotiations for 2012-13. 

The unions’ joint claim includes a 7% increase on all pay points. The claim also contains five additional elements, including seeking a commitment to a ‘Living Wage’ and equality issues.

The employers and unions discussed details of the claim alongside the ongoing challenges and uncertainties facing the sector and its 151 HEIs taking part in this multi-employer pay round. Employers emphasised the current financial insecurity, and that sustainability remains pivotal as HEIs adjust to working within the changing funding arrangements.

Employers explained why the claim of 7% was not achievable in light of sustainability for HEIs with the cost amounting to a £1bn increase on the HE pay bill. 

Against this background, the employers invited the trade unions to consider an improved offer of 0.8% on all points on the JNCHES pay spine. For approximately 40% of staff this is in addition to an incremental pay rise they will receive this year.
 
Professor Paul Curran, Chair of the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA) said:
“Today was another constructive meeting as both sides explored elements of the claim in more detail within the context of uncertainty within the sector. We are pleased to be in a position to make an improved offer and trust that trade unions will recognise that it has been made in testing times.  Recent research shows that HE pay and benefits packages continue to compare favourably to those outside of the sector.”

The employers will explore further the outstanding issues discussed at today’s meeting. 

* EIS, GMB, UCU, Unison and Unite.
** A 0.5% offer had been made at the first New JNCHES (Joint Negotiating Committee for Higher Education Staff) meeting on 30 March.

ENDS


For further information:

Please contact Andy Fryer, Communications Manager (a.fryer@ucea.ac.uk) or Marc Whittaker, Communications and Events Officer (m.whittaker@ucea.ac.uk) on 020 7383 2444.
 

Notes to Editors

The New JNCHES negotiating timetable is a process that usually runs across meetings in March, April and May.  This forum allows for three negotiating meetings (more if required); the first took place on 30 March and the next meeting is scheduled to take place on 22 May.