UNISON Northern Ireland

Update on ongoing pay discussions


A collective statement has been released from Trade Union Joint Secretaries, Anne Speed, Kevin McCabe and Janice Smyth, and Trade Union Chairperson Kevin McAdam.

“The final meeting concerning this year’s pay discussions ended without agreement. The Department of Health having unilaterally sought a budget for pay (insufficient to meet the Agenda for Change uplift as per the other countries) have arrived at a situation where in the absence of agreement, DOH are applying the uplift of their proposal of 22 November In order to meet the payroll deadline for full payment of arrears in February’s pay.

This does not mean that the negotiators have or will give up.

The Department remain adamant that only a Minister can authorise pay realignment and/or set a new public sector pay policy that will allow for full funding of the AFC refresh as per the other countries. Trade Union side have advocated AFC refresh does not need ministerial approval to spend funding set aside at Westminster. The Department have given a commitment to working towards the refresh goal but as we all are aware the issue here is a lack of a Minister.

We remain committed to achieving pay parity with at least England and Wales and will start fresh negotiations early in the New Year.”