Concessions from Natural England mean end to Prospect industrial action for now

24 June 2022

Prospect members at Natural England who have been taking part in industrial action for most of 2022 have won concessions from the employer. In particular Natural England has agreed to work much more closely with Prospect and PCS with unions forming part of the teams on the Staff Framework Review and Pay Reform projects.

It is Natural England’s broken pay system that has left its workers even more severely impacted by austerity and the recent pay pause than colleagues elsewhere in Defra and the wider public sector. Agreeing to change the structural issues within Natural England’s pay system was one of the key goals of Prospect’s industrial action. This agreement from the employer to address those issues means that Prospects industrial action will end, effective from 30 June 2022.

That said, due to central government pay remit guidance being significantly below inflation, Prospect members will not see net improvement in their pay prospects during 2022. If progress is not forthcoming on structural pay issues and then on overall pay levels then we do not rule out future industrial action.

Prospect Deputy General Secretary Garry Graham said:

“This is a victory for Prospect’s industrial action at Natural England, without which we would not now be seeing this commitment from the employer to address the structural pay issues. We have demonstrated that with strong negotiation backed up by industrial action we can achieve our members’ goals.

“Make no mistake though, calling off this action is a reciprocal gesture of good will from Prospect after the employer agreed to address the long term issues we have seen with pay. If no progress is made and if the overall pay envelope continues to see our members losing money year-on-year then we will not hesitate to seek further industrial action.

“Our members are the guardians of the natural environment in England – its time the government started treated them as the national asset they are instead of taking them for granted.”

Natural England

Highlighting the valuable work the organisation does and the threats it faces.

Public Services

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