UNISON Northern Ireland


Thousands of UNISON education support service workers have pledged to bring their demands for pay improvement right to the Minister in situ and make their demands the centre of election debates leading up to the 5th May.

In a recent consultation the union has received the backing of its members to make their demand for an EA pay and grading review of how the NJC agreement applies in Northern Ireland.

"We were promised this as part of the 2019-2021 pay deal" stressed Noreen Robinson, Lay Convenor for UNISON education workers.

"The covid pandemic certainly caused a delay.  But there is no excuse for the recent failure of the outgoing Minister and the Department to mandate the opening of EA negotiations with trade unions.”

Given the derisory increase on NJC rates, it should have been abundantly clear that education workers are not going to give up and go away. There were no signals that we are valued. There was no Covid recognition bonus for the thousands of classroom assistants, catering staff, estates, transport and office staff who kept the  schools open and safe for our children during extremely challenging times.

Over the next number of weeks UNISON members will be sending strong messages from our workplaces that we deserve better. These messages will be brought to whatever minister is in place after May 5th. 

No response will lead very quickly to notice of a trade dispute and a full scale ballot for industrial action in the weeks that follow."