National pay campaign has the wrong focus

We welcome the fact that there is a national pay campaign – unfortunately it is wanting in many ways. In a later post (in a few days time) we will set out how we would run such a campaign but in the here and now we say that the main demand should not be for a pay increase of 5% or £1,200 – whichever is the greater – but for equal pay. That pay levelled up across the civil service to the current best rates, and with 5% etc then added on.

Now it is true that equal pay is mentioned in the pay claim sent to the Government but only at the very end and with little fanfare.If the Civil Service does take our claim seriously then it will be clear to them that equal pay is not important; that if it was, it would be the lead and right at the front.

Yet campaigning for equal pay is the one thing that would unite the bulk of the membership.

We have for years argued that publishing, again and again, in as many imaginative ways as possible, the variations in pay rates of each grade in each department would galvanise members as they will see that if they at AO, EO etc they are paid much less than others at the same grade elsewhere. The pay fight then becomes one of fairness and for equal pay; two powerful slogans to campaign behind.

The pay differences at various grades are greater in many cases than £1,200 or 5% (the union’s claim). We think it is much easier to mobilise members to fight for something that already exists at their grade in another department than for a number (if they have it, why can’t we).

Even if we were to win 5% or £1,200 then unequal pay would in fact become worse in the civil service (5% of something is better than 5% of little).

If our slate were elected onto the NEC, then we would argue for equal pay, the best rates for all plus an add on. If you want equal pay for all in the civil service, if you think fighting for pay fairness is a more powerful way of mobilising members than fighting for a number then please vote for us.

Our NEC slate is:


Bev Laidlaw (DWP)

Vice Presidents

Tom Bishell (DWP)

Bryan Carlsen (HSE)

Phil Dickens (HMRC)

John Moloney (DfT)


Tom Bishell (DWP)

Bryan Carlsen (HSE)

Ralph Corrigan (PsG)

Phil Dickens (HMRC)

Chris Hickey (CLG)

Karen Johnson (CLG)

Bev Laidlaw (DWP)

Chris Marks (DWP)

Charlie McDonald (DWP)

John Moloney (DfT)

Oli Rahman (DWP)

Paulette Romain (CLG)

Leon Searle (DWP)

George Thompson (DWP)

Ray Webb (DSA)

Gilaine Young (DfT)




One thought on “National pay campaign has the wrong focus

  1. Pingback: Pay – mapping out a new way | PCS Independent Left

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s