Friday, 23 October 2015

SLC Update (23/09/15)

Here's a post from the blog site archive dating back to 2007 which highlights the big differences in pay between traditional male and female jobs.

The key point to note is that these big pay differentials were known to the trade unions all those years ago because the trade unions negotiated and agreed the pay arrangements with South Lanarkshire Council's management.

The original aim of the 1999 Single Status (Equal Pay) Agreement was to increase the pay of thousands of low paid women's jobs which both the employers and the trade unions accepted had been undervalued for years.

But the approach of the unions and management in South Lanarkshire focussed instead on protecting and preserving the higher pay of traditional male jobs which is why so many women workers lost out when new pay scales and grades were finally implemented in April 2004.

Though it's worth pointing out that what happened in South Lanarkshire Council bore no relation to the spirit or intention of the 1999 Single Status Agreement. 

Equal Pay Bombshell for South Lanarkshire (14/11/07)

Great news, South Lanarkshire's cat is finally out of the bag and women workers in that council will now begin to realise the extent of their betrayal over equal pay.

We asked our clients for help to discover the size of the pay gap between traditional male and female jobs.

Remember this is the council that boasted famously: "We don't have an equal pay problem" - South Lanarkshire supposedly sorted things out with a new Single Status pay structure in 2004.

We asked people to confirm what the male jobs actually earn relying on the fact that our clients live and work alongside the men doing these jobs.

And boy, oh boy, have they delivered the goods. Personal details will be withheld for obvious reasons, but the results are utterly astonishing and confirm that the pay gap is much greater than even we imagined.

For example, a Refuse Driver is currently paid £11.02 per hour which is Spinal Column Point (SCP) 44 on the pay ladder according to a pay slip that has been passed to Action 4 Equality.

Even a humble Refuse Collector is paid £9.50 an hour which equates to Spinal Column Point 34.

But a basic grade Home Carer (a predominantly female job, of course) is paid only £6.65 per hour, a lowly Spinal Column Point 10.

So, the difference between the female carer's job and the male refuse worker's job is a whopping £4.37 per or £8,400 a year for a full-time worker!!!

The whole thing stinks to high heaven. No wonder the council and the unions tried to keep this under wraps they should be ashamed of themselves. 

Before South Lanarkshire's Single Status scheme came into play in 2004 a Home Carer was on Manual Worker (MW) Grade 5, i.e. on a higher grade than her two male colleagues with the Refuse Driver on Grade MW 4 and the Refuse Collector on MW 2.

Now the 1999 Single Status Agreement was about tackling the pay gap and being fairer to women workers, but in South Lanarkshire the notion of equal pay has been turned completely on its head.

The geniuses behind 2004 have made a mockery of Single Status. The council has cheated the workforce and the unions have betrayed their own members. We now intend to hold the people responsible to account.

Because in South Lanarkshire some workers are more equal than others.