Friday, 17 August 2018

UNISON call on Scottish Government to devolve NHS union pay negotiations

In this video Lilian Macer UNISON Scotland convener and Tam Waterson Chair of the Scottish Health Committee explain why we now want to negotiate on pay direct with the Scottish Government and not the UK NHS Pay Review Board.​ UNISON, Scotland’s biggest health union, is calling on the Scottish Government to set up formal structures to negotiate direct with NHS unions in Scotland, and officially leave the UK’s NHS Pay Review Body.​

This call came after NHS members voted to accept a new three year pay deal direct with the Scottish Government on 17 August 2018.​ This was after years of being given 1% pay rises from through UK’s NHS Pay Review Body.​ This was the first year UNISON Scotland had negotiated directly with Scottish Government.​

Please find below links for a video on equal pay – produced by Walter Gaffney, communication activist.​


It is live on Youtube UNISON Scotland channel: https:/​/​www.​youtube.​com/​watch?v=EKX5MQwrOok

Press Statement: NHS Pay Ballot Results

UNISON, Scotland’s biggest health union, is calling on the Scottish Government to set up formal structures to negotiate direct with NHS unions in Scotland and officially leave the UK’s NHS Pay Review Body.

The call comes after NHS members voted overwhelmingly to accept a new three year pay deal direct with the Scottish Government after years of being given 1% pay rises from the UK’s NHS Pay Review Body.  This is the first year this has happened.

The UK’s NHS Pay Review Body negotiates with health unions on pay on behalf of the NHS across the UK.  UNISON members do not believe that the NHS Pay Review Body listens to their concerns.  It has been calling on the Scottish Government to set up pay negotiating structures directly with unions on pay and conditions in Scotland. 

Tom Waterson, Chair of the UNISON Health Committee said; “Today I am pleased to announce that 94% of UNISON members have voted to accept a pay deal which will put an additional £400m on the pay bill, delivering real increases of between 3 and 27% for NHS workers in Scotland.  This deal and it’s strong endorsement by members makes it clear that we do not need to wait cap in hand for the Pay Review Body and that the institution as it stands is dead in the water.  18 months ago some people said that we couldn’t negotiate a pay deal for NHS workers in Scotland.  Then they said that we couldn’t negotiate a better deal for Scotland.  The Scottish Government should commit now to develop negotiating structures in Scotland and allow us to self determine on pay”.

UNISON Head of Health for UNISON Scotland, Matt McLaughlin, said, “This is a good result for UNISON members and I am happy that across Scotland we reached out to and engaged with the vast majority of our members.  Their decision is ringing endorsement of the offer”.

Details of the deal:

  • All NHS Scotland staff earning under £80,000 to receive a 3% pay increase backdated to 1st April 2018 with a payment of £1600 for staff earning more than £80,000
  • The top of all pay scales to rise by 9% over the lifetime of the three-year deal (including 2018) or £1600 per annum for scales above £80,000
  • Larger increments and faster progression for staff in post, but not yet at the top of their pay band – worth between 11.3% and 27.7%
  • Removal of band overlaps to ensure promotion comes with a proper pay rise and to lessen the risk of equal pay challenges
  • Big improvements in starting salaries to help the NHS attract and retain new staff
  • Applies to all NHS contractor staff 

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Have you had your say on NHS Pay in Scotland?

Are you a UNISON member?

Have you voted in the UNISON NHS Pay Ballot?

Do you have questions, or want to know how it will affect you?

The UNISON Orkney Health Branch is holding a drop-in session on Thursday 9th August for members to come along and ask questions about the NHS Pay Offer.

The drop-in session is on 9th August from 11:30-16:30 in the Claymore Room, Balfour Hospital.

Members will have the chance to use the UNISON Pay Calculator, and if they have not yet done so, cast their vote in the Online Pay Ballot which closes on the 14th August.

If you are unable to attend the session but still require to vote, please follow the link:

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Scottish Women's Convention Survey on Women's Health

Please click the link below to complete a survey on part of the SWC's overall work on women's health in Scotland.  They want to build a comprehensive overview of diagnosis, treatment and support for a range of health issues which are specific to women.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018


Your Branch is concerned that our members are seeing many reports, and comments on, current movements on NHS pay from other sources. We have therefore compiled this brief update to ensure that you are fully aware of the actual facts in relation to pay discussions:
  • The Framework Agreement on pay and proposed reform of Agenda for Change dated March 21st 2018 applies to England only. It does NOT apply to Scotland
  •  UNISON is the only trade union that has lodged a specific pay claim with the Scottish Government.
  • UNISON’s pay claim remains to be one that is higher than inflation and not only is a real pay increase for our members but begins to reclaim money not paid to our members over the past seven years.
  • UNISON have met with the Scottish Government twice in the last week to discuss our Scottish pay claim and we will be meeting them again on March 26th.
  • It was less than nine months ago that the Government was saying that their policy of a 1% public sector pay cap would remain in place until at least 2020. The last pay offer for this year pay had increased the offer to 3%, proof that UNISON’s ‘Pay Up Now’ campaign was proving a major success.
  • The Scottish Government promised hard working staff that the pay award would be in people’s pockets by April 1st but have now reneged on that. When final agreement is reached the pay award will be backdated to April 1st but we know our members need that money now, not when the Government can be bothered to get around to paying it.
  • UNISON is led by our members and it is our members who will decide the way forward. Therefore when UNISON has concluded negotiations with the Scottish Government members will then decide whether they accept an offer or not.
  • It is UNISON who have forced the Scottish Government to triple their original pay offer this year, it is UNISON who will continue to fight for and campaign for Fair Pay in the NHS.
If you want to be a member of the trade union that drives up pay in Scotland and the trade union that the Scottish Government know they have to listen to and negotiate with, then UNISON is the trade union for you.

Contact the Orkney Health branch on: or 07887414409

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Young Members are NOT 'the future'

November is officially Young Workers’ Month. Though we know many UNISON members will always be young at heart, in UNISON members count as ‘young’ if they are 27 or under.
So to celebrate Young Workers’ Month, we caught up with 27 members who are under 27.
Young workers are not ‘the future.’ They’re here right now. All too often young workers’ views are overlooked, their development neglected, and their pay and conditions worse than older workers, even if they do exactly the same job.
UNISON is working for a better deal for young workers...
To read more please see the link below:

Friday, 20 October 2017

Healthy Workplaces for all Ages

In association with Health & Safety Week which runs from 23rd-29th October please find below a link to an interactive guide for Health Workplaces for all ages:

UNISON supports the campaign for safer and healthier work, so promotes the European Health and Safety Week and the UK National Inspection Day on the Wednesday of the Week.

This year’s theme remains  “Healthy workplaces for all ages” and good workplace design and well managed health and safety benefit all of those at work; whether young, old, or in-between.
Changes in life expectancy and pension provision means that more workers will stay at work as they age.  Apprenticeship schemes as an alternative to schooling may see more young people at work.
Employers must look after the health and safety of all employees; but particularly consider vulnerable groups such as older or younger workers, or women of child-bearing age.  Working for longer, and the fact that children now grow up with computers, may also result in longer exposure to risks (musculoskeletal or otherwise).
Older workers are more likely to suffer disabilities and long term health problems so measures such as rehabilitation and return to work will become more important.
So UNISON encourages employers and branches to work together.