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Monday 12 October 2020

FDA rejects Defra's "bargain basement" pay offer

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The FDA, along with the other unions representing staff at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), has written to the Secretary of State George Eustice calling for a meeting to discuss the department’s pay offer for 2020.

The letter from the unions points out that, while the department claims the pay offer would give staff pay increases of an average of 2.75%, in reality, for many the real increase would only be 0.5%. The department has also failed to make a business case to the Treasury to reform its pay structures and fix longstanding pay anomalies.

The letter goes on: “We have been reassured year after year that a business case is being considered only to find once again that the department does not consider its own staff a high enough priority to make one.”

FDA National Officer for Defra, Steven Littlewood, said: “Defra has been boasting about its headline figures, but what the department consistently evades is the fact that they had it available to them to pursue an increase of 2.5% in consolidated pay and they chose not to do so. Instead, they have relied heavily on non-consolidated payments which do not increase base pay and, crucially, which cost the department less.”

Littlewood concluded that “the department is not only giving staff a bargain basement pay offer, they are passing it off as something much more generous. Effectively this pay deal is a Reliant Robin masquerading as a Rolls Royce.”

You can read more on this story in Civil Service World.

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