The government has done a deal with the biggest Civil Service union over pay, lifting the threat of strike action for the foreseeable future.
Following intensive talks, the Public and Commercial and Commercial Services (PCS) Union’s national executive committee endorsed the agreement, which means that money from ‘efficiency savings’ will now be released for pay bargaining in individual departments and related public bodies.
The government has also said that there is no 2% cap on pay increases.
The agreement with the head of civil service, Gus O’Donnell sets out a framework for resolving current pay disputes and for future pay negotiations.
While the threat of industrial action has been lifted, the PCS said its pay campaign would continue and negotiators would be testing the agreement in pay negotiations. There will also be further talks with the government on performance pay, pay progression, regional pay and reducing the number of bargaining areas.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “This agreement is an important breakthrough and forms a positive basis from which we can take the union’s pay campaign forward.
“Over the coming weeks and months we will be ensuring that this agreement produces better pay for the low-paid public servants who deliver the everyday things we take for granted.”