UNISON, Napo, and GMB/SCOOP have submitted the following three year pay claim on behalf of members in the Probation Service:
- A three-year award to cover the 2022, 2023 and 2024 pay years
- An increase in the value of all pay points of 3% above the Retail Prices Index (RPI) of inflation on 1 April 2022, 1 April 2023, and 1 April 2024
- An increase in the value of all Probation Service cash allowances of 3% above the Retail Prices Index (RPI) of inflation on 1 April 2022, 1 April 2023 and 1 April 2024
- Shorter pay bands to allow staff to reach the top of their pay band in a shorter time
- Removal of pay band overlaps
- An increase in the HMRC Fixed Profit Car Allowance
PROBATION NEEDS A PAY RISE
While a wage keeping pace with the cost of living each year would have risen by 42.9% (compound) since 2010, pay in Probation has risen by just 1% over the same period, which means that thousands of pounds have been cut from the value of staff wages.
By ‘pay rise’ we mean an actual increase in the value of pay points. It is these values which have only gone up by only 1% in the last 12 years for probation staff. Do not confuse your annual increment with a pay rise. Your increment is a contractual entitlement, not a pay rise.
Here is how probation staff compare with their police staff, local government and health service colleagues in relation to actual increases in the value of their pay since 2010:
- Probation Staff: 1%
- Police Staff: 8%
- Local Government Staff: 6%
- NHS Staff: 2%
Remember, staff in the police, local government and the health service have had their increments in addition to the pay rises above. It is no wonder that leaving probation for a job in a different part of the public sector has become so attractive.
COST OF LIVING CRISIS
Inflation is currently running at 9% (March 2022) which is the highest level in three decades. For the value of probation staff salaries not to fall back even further, they must at least keep pace with predicted rises in the cost of living, which Treasury forecasts put at 7.4% in 2022.
Staff have experienced an enormous surge in costs over the last year, including:
- A 29% increase in gas bills;
- A 21% increase in petrol prices;
- A 19% increase in electricity bills;
- A 10% rise in the price of buying a house and a 9% jump in rent for a new rental property.
These demands on pay packets will be even greater against the background of the 1.25% increase to National Insurance contributions over 2022/23.