Scottish Public Sector Pay Policy mix of positives and negatives

9 December 2021

The Scottish Public Sector Pay Policy for 2022-23 is a mixed bag of positives and negatives for Prospect members in Scotland. The Pay Policy was announced today alongside today’s Budget Statement by the Scottish Government.

Prospect very much welcome the continued support for employers to move to a 35-hour working week, and the less restrictive language context in which it is set, and we also welcome the opportunity to meaningfully discuss with employers the possibility of a four-day week.

Prospect has run a national campaign across the UK on a Right To Disconnect and so we are delighted to see that the Cabinet Secretary has made it a requirement of public bodies to discuss this crucial issue with their unions, and we welcome the Cabinet Secretaries very obvious support on what is a matter of growing concern,.

We welcome the change in approach by the Scottish Government on the ability for employers and Unions to negotiate multi-year deals and we recognise the freeing up in the policy for employers to enter meaningful negotiations in relation to pay awards that reflect their ability to pay. We further recognise ongoing commitments to pay progression and the no compulsory redundancy guarantee.

We must be clear however the salary increases mandated by the policy fall woefully short of what is expected by our members at a time of soaring inflation, rising energy bills, and it continues the Scottish Government’s approach of dividing civil servants based upon an arbitrary salary figure which Prospect has long criticised.

Richard Hardy , Prospect National Secretary for Scotland, said:

“Whilst I welcome the new commitments around Right to Disconnect, four-day week, and multi-year settlements, and the ongoing commitments around the 35-hour week, and I thank the Cabinet Secretary for listening in particular to Prospect on the matter of Right To Disconnect,  I have to say that the mandated minimums in the policy fall well short of what our members were expecting in these increasingly tight economic times”

“We have long called for the Scottish Government to move away from differential pay awards based solely on arbitrary salaries, and risks creating two tiers of public servants for 2022-23 the undeserving and the even more undeserving”