Council staff pay bid could force redundancies, employers claim

Local
government has described staff pay claims for next year as "completely
unrealistic".

The
claim announced at this week’s National Joint Council meeting is for £1,750 or
6 per cent, depending on which is greater. 

The
Employers’ Organisation for Local Government claims that this would add 19 per
cent to salaries at the bottom of the pay scale and 11.7 per cent on average.
It would cost local government in England and Wales £1,685m.

Brian
Baldwin, chairman of the employers on the National Joint Council, said,
"This claim is completely unrealistic. It is nearly seven times the rate
of inflation on average and nine times inflation for those on the lowest rates.
No council can afford this exorbitant claim.

"If
accepted, it would mean thousands of local government workers would be on the
dole by next Christmas."

Employers
will now consult all authorities in England and Wales about the claim, and will
contribute to the employers’ pay offer in February.

By Paul Nelson

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