LG Pay 2021 -Common Queries
We are currently dealing with a very high volume of queries relating to the LG pay ballot. I have listed below some of the common questions that have arisen, in addition to those covered by the FAQs, and responses to them.
Other TU’s are recommending rejection of the offer – why are UNISON recommending acceptance? This is simply not true. Unite have recommended acceptance. GMB put the offer out to consultation without a recommendation but have informed members it is the best that can be achieved by negotiation.
Why are GMB members in Glasgow getting a higher offer than members employed elsewhere? Again, this is not the case. GMB members in Glasgow have raised a number of local issues with Glasgow City Council – there are no, and will not be any, local revisions to the pay offer. SJC pay is negotiated nationally by the joint trade unions – no discussions on SJC pay will take place without UNISON being in the room.
I work in social care and you have just asked me to sign a petition calling for a £2k loyalty bonus and a £2k welcome bonus. If this is what they union is asking for why are you also advising me to vote to accept this offer from COSLA which is for a lower amount? The ‘asks’ outlined in the social care petition are for members working in social care in the third and private sector and are unrelated to the pay negotiations for social care members employed by local authorities.
I received an e-mail from UNISON nationally telling me to vote to take industrial action on local government pay – why are you telling me to accept this offer? There are multiple ballots taking place across the union at the same time right now. The recent e-mail issued by UNISON head office related to NJC pay – that is for members employed by local authorities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It does not apply to members in Scotland.
The e-mail you have received from our Scottish Head of Local Government and Local Government Chair re the SJC ballot is what we are asking you to vote on, with the Committee’s recommendation to accept.
I haven’t received my vote – where is it? If you have not received an e-mail with your voting link please, in the first instance, check your junk/spam folders. If it is not there and you still have not received it by the end of this week please call 0800 0857857 or log in to MyUnison (https://www.unison.org.uk/my-unison/) to check that the details we hold for you are up to date.
I don’t have an e-mail address on your system/my e-mail address has recently changed – how do I get a vote? As long as your membership records are updated BEFORE 22nd November 2021 you will receive an e-mail with your voting link. To update your details call 0800 0857857 or log in to MyUnison at https://www.unison.org.uk/my-unison/
The system doesn’t allow me to vote to reject! It does. The option is to select “vote here” on your e-mail and scroll to the bottom of the ballot page where the voting options are located.
The system is telling me that I have already voted when I haven’t – how can I cast my vote? This is a safety feature to help prevent duplicate voting. We suspect what is happening is that the link has been clicked on and closed before using the vote button and the system is then blocking the IP address. Members should clear their cookies and try the link again. It should then work. To clear cookies check online for advice on the specific device you may be using or the following steps may assist: On your computer, open Chrome. At the top right, click ‘More’. Click ‘More tools’. Clear browsing data. At the top, choose a time range. To delete everything, select ‘All time’. Next to “Cookies and other site data” and “Cached images and files,” check the boxes. Click Clear data.
I have clicked on the ballot link but the page is not loading – how can I vote? The ballot link is currently experiencing a lot of web traffic and is having difficulty loading for some. It has been brought to our attention and we have raised the issue with customer support. Please try it again later – you have until midday on the 29th November to cast your vote.
I accidentally voted to accept (or reject) when I meant to reject (or accept) – can I change my vote? Unfortunately not. The vote is anonymous and so the system quite rightly does not allow us to make changes to it. To do otherwise may leave the voting system open to abuse.
LG Pay Ballot – Update
Our new consultative ballot on the revised LG pay offer is now live and will be sent out by email. The email should be hitting your mailbox shortly, though the system sends them out in batches so they will not all arrive at the same time.
An FAQ document has been created to help to answer any questions you may have and can be found here.
The ballot will run until midday on the 29th November and new members will need to join by 22nd November to be included in the ballot.
If you have not received an e-mail with your voting link please, in the first instance, check your junk/spam folders. If it is not there and you still have not received it by the end of this week (Friday 12th of November) please call 0800 0857857 or log in to MyUnison (https://www.unison.org.uk/my-unison) to check that the details we hold for you are up to date.
Clacks Pre-Festive Wellbeing Events (24th Nov – 3rd Dec)
Please see link below to see the Clacks Pre-Festive Wellbeing programme, starting on Wednesday 24th November to Fri 3rd December.
The exciting programme highlights the various daily sessions, and there is something for everyone.
Bookings can be made either by clicking on the ‘To book’ icon next to the session on the electronic flyer, or by visiting the clacks staff info page http://clacksweb/coronavirus/wellbeing/
UNISON Secures increased SLG pay offer
UNISON have received an improved pay offer for the pay year 2021 -2022. The new offer will back date the increase in pay to Jan 2021 instead of March 2021 which increases it’s value specifically for those on low pay. UNISON will be writing out to SLG members to ballot on whether to accept the new offer or not. UNISON’s Local Government Committee is advising members to accept the improved offer.
The pay offer now stands as:
- An increase in the Scottish Local Government Living Wage (SLGLW) hourly rate to £9.78.
- An £850 flat rate increase for those earning less than £25,000 annually (4.72% – 3.43% depending on starting salary). This covers national SCP 2-40 and is calculated on a nominal 37 hour working week.
- A 2% increase for those earning between £25,000 and £40,000
- A 1% increase for those earning between £40,000 and £80,000
- A £800 flat rate increase for those earning more than £80,000 annually
- A back dating of the implementation date of the pay award and the increase in the SLGLW to 1 January 2021. To be clear this takes the value of the flat rate increase from £850 to approximately £1,062 in the year 1 April 2021 – 31 March 2022. While it is acknowledged that the backdating element of the increase is non-recurring it equates to a 5.89% increase in the year for those earning at the current SLGLW rate.
Local Government Pay Ballot – Clackmannanshire Result
UNISON ran a ballot on industrial action over the 2021/22 Local Government pay offer during the month of September. Those eligible to vote were school cleaning staff, school janitorial staff, school catering staff and waste and recycling staff. Although 100% of ballots returned were in favor of taking industrial action the percentage of ballot papers returned was only 30% of all those entitled to vote. Unfortunately the UK has strict laws on industrial action and a 50% return is required for the ballot to be considered valid.
Talks are ongoing at a national level around our next steps and we await the results from the ballots of other trade unions and whether they will proceed with industrial action.
COVID Workforce Issues Update
Schools Reopening Guidance
The Scottish Government guidance for the phased re-opening of schools, as announced by the First Minister today, has now been published and can be found here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-schools-reopening
Annual General Meetings 2021.
Information can be found on http://www.clacksunison.org.uk/?page_id=444
UNISON Scotland has been lobbying Government and seeking negotiated agreements for homeworking expenses to be paid as allowances via payroll. We have not made any significant headway in any sector on early agreement and payments on this basis. So without prejudice to UNISON’s ongoing efforts to secure collective agreements with Employers, we are issuing information to allow you to make an individual claim to HMRC for tax relief for these new expenses incurred for business during this tax year which ends 31 March 2021.
Additional costs include things like heating, metered water bills, home contents insurance, business calls or a new broadband connection. They do not include costs that would stay the same whether you were working at home or in an office, such as mortgage interest, rent or council tax.
You may also be able to claim tax relief on equipment you’ve bought, such as a laptop, chair or mobile phone.How much you can claim
You can either claim tax relief on:
- £6 a week from 6 April 2020 (for previous tax years the rate is £4 a week) – you will not need to keep evidence of your extra costs
- the exact amount of extra costs you’ve incurred above the weekly amount – you’ll need evidence such as receipts, bills or contracts
You’ll get tax relief based on the rate at which you pay tax. For example, if you pay the 20% basic rate of tax and claim tax relief on £6 a week you would get £1.20 per week in tax relief (20% of £6).
To claim these expenses, you need a Government Gateway user ID and password. You can create a user ID if you do not already have one.
Creating a Government Gateway ID usually takes about 10 minutes. It works best if you have:
- your National Insurance number
- a recent payslip or P60 or a valid UK passport
Please see below and cascade this information your members who are working from home.
New General Secretary Christina McAnea
I promise to work across all parts of our union, for all our members.
Click download link above