A 1% pay award for the public sector is disappointing but progress on green jobs welcome

28 January 2021

The Scottish Government’s announcement of a 1% headline pay rise for public sector workers earning over £25k has been met with disappointment by Prospect’s nearly 2,000 members working across the sector.


There was some good news in the Scottish Budget with provision for job creation, particularly in green jobs. However, this is scant reward for the long hours of isolated work undertaken to keep Government and public sector functioning during the most extreme economic and social crisis the country has seen in over 70 years.

The figure does meet Prospect’s bare minimum position that members wages must not erode against inflation but Prospect believes that there was sufficient growth in this year’s Scottish Budget to have made a meaningful step toward pay restoration.The £750 underpin for staff earning less than £25,000, which formed a key part of Prospect’s discussions with the Cabinet Secretary, is however welcome and the continuation of the no compulsory redundancy policy will give members much needed reassurance during the continuing uncertainties of the pandemic.

Richard Hardy, Prospect National Secretary for Scotland said:

“Prospect members have worked extremely hard to keep Government running, and to see no further progress towards pay restoration is deeply disappointing. We should not, however, overlook progress for low paid members and on the working week -at the very least no member will see their real pay reduced, or face compulsory redundancy.

“Notwithstanding the disappointing outcome for many of our Public Service members, Prospect welcomes the focus on job creation, especially in green jobs such a forestry. The increase in health spending and the support for the tourism sector, recognising the role our heritage members will play in kickstarting the economy, is also welcome and not before time.

“The Scottish Government could have shown more ambition in its plans to bounce back from the pandemic. We will be working with them to maximise opportunities for our members.”

Public Services

From protecting our rivers to keeping us safe, Prospect members do vital work across a range of professions.