SJC Pay 2015 – 2017



As you will be aware UNISON and the other SJC trade unions have been in negotiations with the Scottish Employers for a number of months on the issue of pay. We submitted a claim in November last year, the headline of which was an increase of £1 per hour. Unfortunately we were unable to convince the employer’s to make a flat rate increase in this pay round. It was also the case that the employer’s were prepared to offer an increased ‘pot of money’ if the trade unions were able to agree to a two year pay settlement. That being the case the final offer from the employer’s is as follows;


  • A pay agreement which covers the period from 1st April 2015 to 31st March 2017


  • 2015 -2016. As of 1st April 2015, the Scottish Local Government Living Wage of £7.85ph will be applied, following which there will be an increase of 1.5% on all spinal column points. This would achieve a Scottish Local Government Living Wage of £7.97ph


  • 2016 – 2017. As of 1st April 2016, the Living Wage will be increased to the recommended figure of the Living Wage Foundation, following which there will be an increase of 1% on all spinal column points.


  • A commitment from the employer’s to examine the feasibility of a ‘flat rate’ settlement in future pay rounds subject to the trade unions making such a claim.

The Scottish Local Government Committee have carefully considered this offer and whilst they recognise that it does not meet the terms of our claim, it is their view that further negotiations will not improve this offer. It is also noted that the employer’s have committed to discussions with the trade unions commencing in September 2015, regarding the full consolidation of the living wage and the deletion of spinal column points below the level of the living wage


It is therefore their view that this offer is the best that can be achieved by negotiation and that the recommendation to members is to ACCEPT.


A full consultation with members will now take place. This will be in the form of a consultative ballot sent to member’s home addresses. The ballot will open on 3rd September and close at 12 noon on 25th September 2015. Please encourage all members to use their vote.

Trade Union Bill

Dear Colleagues


As part of our ongoing campaign against the trade union bill, UNISON is working with the TUC and other trade unions on a lobby of Westminster Parliament on Monday 2 November 2015. More details will follow.


The lobby will be of vital importance in making sure MPs understand the strength of feeling of ordinary trade union members about the Bill, and their concerns that it will undermine the right to strike and risk public safety and service delivery. The rally will begin at 1pm with speakers at Westminster Central Hall and will aim to show the full diversity of our trade union movement. The lobby is planned to start at 2.30pm.



Meanwhile, the UK government is currently consulting on key elements of the trade union bill, to very tight timelines. UNISON is currently asking members to fill in this right to strike survey,0,0,0,0


This will enable us to quote our members’ views within UNISON’s responses to BIS as well as build our wider campaign against the trade union bill beyond the consultation period. Please encourage as many members to respond as you can.

SJC Pay Update

From Dougie Black

Regional Organiser/SJC Secretary


An update on SJC Pay. I am continuing to press the employers to make a formal offer on pay. However I now understand that CoSLA Leaders will be meeting on Friday 28th August and that the Employers Negotiating Team will be seeking a mandate to make a formal offer. If an offer is made following this meeting, UNISON will arrange a full consultative exercise with branches and members and I will advise you of timescales in the next few days.

2015 Local Government Pay Claim

Debbie Thompson, Branch Secretary wrote to all the elected members with regards to this years pay claim………………


Dear Councillor,



2015/16 Local Government Pay Claim


I am writing to you to update you on the progress of this year’s pay negotiations at the Scottish Joint Council between UNISON and our colleagues in GMB and Unite and the Scottish local government employers.


You will be aware that over the past few years our wages have not kept pace with inflation and that there were two years of pay freezes. This has meant that the value of wages for Scottish council workers has fallen by around 15%. You will also be aware that as part of the settlement with UNISON last year the employers agreed to re-engage with the bargaining machinery and to have proper negotiations with the trade unions.


We are aware of the very difficult financial circumstances that councils are in at the present time however we understand that as employers who value their staff you would wish to properly reward your staff and to address the year-on-year drop in our living standards.


The trade unions have submitted a claim for an increase of £1 per hour across all grades. We were disappointed to learn that an offer of 1% was made and understandably the 3 unions have rejected this. A further offer has now been presented to our negotiators of 2.5% over 2 years (2015/16 and 2016/17).

The union side have asked that the employers reconsider this offer. We would like to see an increase in the overall offer. We have also asked that the employers consider whether the offer could be presented as a ‘flat rate’ rather than a percentage.


We believe that it is not unreasonable for the employers to take on board the long term and substantial fall in the value of our wages and that this should be addressed. We also believe that a ‘flat rate’ is of greater benefit to the low paid and that this would have greatest benefit to that section of the workforce.

The employers are due to return to the trade unions by the end of April. We hope that they will have  a positive response to our requests and that they will be willing to negotiate with us to find an acceptable settlement.


In the meantime we are asking that you raise the issue of a fair settlement for council workers within your council and that you seek to encourage the negotiators, who act in your name, to be willing to make an offer that addresses the reasonable requests of the workforce.



I would appreciate any indication of support,

Hack Aye

As part of a new STUC initiative, Hack Aye ( are working on an event planned for May 2015. The initiative aims to give voice to young people experiencing problems with work and/or who want to campaign against poor working conditions. Young people will drive this campaign, and all contributions are welcome. Whether they’re in work, unemployed or in education, we want to hear their views, stories about zero hours contracts, insecure work or low pay. Participants can remain anonymous if they prefer – confidentiality will be 100% respected. Email to register an interest and receive further information.