NIPSA General Secretary Carmel Gates describes civil servant pay offer as 'derisory and insulting'

NIPSA general secretary Carmel Gates described the pay offer as "derisory" and "insulting"

Civil servants in Northern Ireland have been made what has been described as a "final pay offer" for 2022.

The Department of Finance, which is responsible for civil servants pay, said the offer is possible following the announcement of a budget for Northern Ireland by the Secretary of State and the passage of legislation at Westminster.

The pay offer will cost around £26.8m or 2.7% of the Northern Ireland pay bill.  

The Department of Finance said it is "affordable", however in a statement a spokesperson said the department "recognises and regrets the pay offer is below what staff and unions will expect in a very challenging year for the cost of living.

"Unfortunately, the Budget position does not provide any additional scope to offer a higher pay award."

The offer includes increasing the salary of the lowest paid staff to the Living Wage Foundation rate of £10.90 an hour or £21,053 annually.  

All other eligible staff will receive an increase of £552.

The department says percentage increases will vary depending on grade, with those on the lowest grades receiving the highest percentage increases.

"For example, staff on the bottom of the scale at Administrative Assistant (AA) or at Industrial 1 grades would receive a 10.10% increase, staff at the maximum EO2 pay-point will receive an increase of just over 2%, while those at the highest grades, for example Grade 3, would receive a 0.51% increase at the maximum pay-point," a spokesperson explained.

"Those staff who are below the top of their pay band will also be getting progression increase."

The department said it hopes the pay award can be agreed as a "matter of urgency."

However, in a video on social media the General Secretary of NIPSA has described the pay offer as the most "derisory and insulting pay offer received by any group of workers". 

NIPSA General Secretary Carmel Gates also suggested strike action was on the cards and said, "we have no choice but to fight, we have no choice but to join the action of our sister unions."

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