Staff working in Higher Education (HE) have been offered a pay rise of just 0.8% by the employers’ representatives, the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA).
Unions asked the HE employers to make an offer that would address the real terms pay cuts that members have endured in recent years. The unions are also calling for action on the gender pay gap in HE, on the growing use of zero hours contracts in the sector and on increasing workloads that members are facing.
UNISON’s Head of Higher Education, Donna Rowe-Merriman, said:
“This low offer provides no relief to dedicated HE workers who have been hit with real terms pay cuts in recent years.
“There are still more than 4,000 HE workers across the UK earning below the living wage. We believe that many HE institutions that do not currently pay this basic rate could afford to do so.
“Many UNISON members are also facing the added pressure of job insecurity and the increasing use of precarious zero hours contracts.”
UNISON members are under pressure from employers to be flexible and to improve student life on campus on a daily basis by maintaining and improving facilities and service provisions. Yet at the same time their pay is restrained and their living standards and income continue to fall.
The two sides are due to meet again on Tuesday 21 May.
Source: UNISON website