Youth workers agree two-year pay deal

By Neil Puffett

| 26 September 2018

Youth workers will get a two per cent pay rise this year and again in 2019 after union members agreed a two-year deal.

Youth service funding has been cut by £400m since 2010. Picture: NTI

The National Education Union, the University and College Union, Unison and Unite, which jointly negotiate on behalf of more than 10,000 youth and community workers across England & Wales confirmed details of the agreement following consultation with members, with all voting in favour of the deal.

Unite said its members voted overwhelmingly in favour of the two-year JNC (Joint Negotiating Committee) "pink book" pay deal with a 90 per cent majority. The deal will come into effect immediately.

Under the terms of the agreement, the lowest paid workers on pay bands seven and below will receive in excess of two per cent over the two years.

Colenzo Jarrett-Thorpe, Unite national officer for youth and community workers, said: "We thank all the members that have participated in this ballot and made their voices heard.

"This pay deal does represent progress in this climate of economic and political uncertainty, but we will continue to campaign for decent pay for youth and community workers and better funding for youth and community services.

"Unite the union will publish the new JNC pink book rates as soon as they are available and we will work with employers in the statutory and voluntary sectors so that the new pay deal can be implemented in employees' October pay packets with the correct back pay calculations."

Unions representing youth workers had been pushing for a five per cent or £1,000 a year - whichever was the greater - increase in both 2018 and 2019.

The unions had argued that the pay rises are justified because youth worker pay has fallen 21 per cent in real-terms since 2010 due to pay freezes and below-inflation wage rises. They also noted that youth service funding has been cut by £400m since 2010 leading to many youth workers losing their jobs.

The "pink book", was first established in 1961 and sets out a 32-point pay scale for youth and community support workers.

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