At a time of continuing pay freeze, increasing pension contributions, and spiralling living costs some astonishing national negotiations are taking place. In response to demands from employers for cuts to balance their books the NHS Staff Council is proposing to agree cuts to pay and conditions for NHS staff.

National negotiators from some NHS unions now suggest that we agree an initial package of cuts for April 2013 in the hope that it will dissuade some NHS employers from attempting to destroy large parts of our NHS pay, terms and conditions agreement, Agenda for Change.
Over the next weeks we will get information from different parts of the union about these proposals. Our branch leadership, made up of your fellow health workers, is firmly opposed to this deal. The proposals are below plus a branch commentary.

20 NHS employers in the South West region have formed a pay cartel to slash staff pay and smash staff terms and conditions.  Worryingly one senior HR person in Oxford Health announced to union reps that he will approaching his high level personal contacts inside the cartel for advice, raising the question of whether Oxfordshire employers might be considering a similar move to attack pay. 

The national NHS employers have approached the NHS unions, including UNISON, asking for agreement to change Agenda for Change terms and conditions.
Employers want the changes as part of strategy of cutting the wage bill to meet the government's demands for £20 billion cuts before 2015.
Employers want to:

  •     cut sick pay by not paying unsocial hours payments staff currently get
  •     set targets for staff and remove increments if they don't meet them
  •     "reprofile jobs" , which if accepted, would allow them to change the pay bands within a service

Plans to set up a pay cartel across 16 hospital Trusts in the South West, will damage patient care and drive down pay, warned UNISON, the UK’s largest union today. The move also threatens the future of on-going national negotiations on changes to Agenda for Change – the NHS pay bargaining system.

The government is continuing it's policy of holding NHS pay rises below inflation for the third year running.

The proposed pay settlement for 2012 for NHS staff is that staff earning less than £21,000 will get a flat rate £250 (equivalent of 1.66% for someone earning £15,000 and 1.2% for someone earning earning £21,000).

Everyone else will get no pay rise this year.

UNISON wants to know what you think of the pay offer.

You can help us decide our response by completing the survey here.

This guide was produced using a scan of an Oxford Health Foundation Trust paylsip to help UNISON members check their pay.  It does cover some of the calculations which could be of use to UNISON members in other Trusts.

Click here for the paylsip guide.