As of April 2019, the NJC (National Joint Council) Pay Agreement has been updated for UK local government workers. This agreement sets the pay scales for over one million local government employees, including social workers, administrative staff, and teaching assistants.
The new agreement includes a 2.75% pay rise for workers earning up to £24,000 per year, while those earning over £24,000 will receive a flat rate increase of £655. This means that the lowest-paid workers will receive a minimum increase of £656 per year, which will help to reduce the impact of inflation on their salaries.
The NJC Pay Agreement also includes a commitment to a minimum living wage of £9.30 per hour for all employees, in line with the recommendations of the UK Living Wage Foundation. This will help to ensure that no workers in the local government sector are paid less than they need to cover their basic living expenses.
In addition to these changes, the NJC Pay Agreement also includes improvements to the sick pay entitlements of local government workers. Employees who are off sick for more than four weeks will now receive full pay for the first four weeks, followed by half pay for the next four weeks. This will ensure that workers who are ill or injured do not suffer undue financial hardship as a result.
As with any change to pay and employment terms, there have been some criticisms of the NJC Pay Agreement. Unions representing local government workers have argued that the 2.75% pay rise does not go far enough, and have called for a larger increase to help workers keep up with the rising cost of living in the UK.
Overall, however, the NJC Pay Agreement represents a step forward for local government workers. By increasing pay and improving sick pay entitlements, it will help to ensure that employees are treated fairly and can earn a decent living. As such, it is to be welcomed by all those who believe in fair wages and decent working conditions for all.