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POA Conference 2022 Public-sector workers have called for an end to ‘so-called’ independent pay review bodies

It's time collective bargaining rights were returned to us, NASUWT general secretary says

COLLECTIVE bargaining rights must be returned to underpaid public-sector workers if another round of real-terms wage cuts is imposed on them, NASUWT general secretary Patrick Roach warned today.

The teaching union’s general secretary slammed “so-called” independent pay review bodies, accusing them of consistently failing to deliver for demoralised key workers.

Addressing delegates at the Prison Officers’ Association’s (POA) annual conference, he said: “Both of our unions are having to deal with pay review bodies that have demonstrated year in, year out that they can no longer claim to be independent.

“We are with you – time’s up. If they won’t deliver for our members again this year, we must campaign to abolish that failed and rigged system and ensure that our members’ right to free collective bargaining is assured.”

Dr Roach urged the union’s delegates — gathered in Eastbourne’s Welcome Building — to attend the TUC’s new deal for workers rally in London on June 18.

He added: “Our members are vital key workers who share a passion for public service. They want to make a difference to the lives of the people that they serve.

“But they are struggling to do their jobs in a context of underfunded services, privatisation, excessive workload pressures, demoralisation, stress and burnout, a recruitment and retention crisis and the daily experience of violent assault or verbal abuse.

“You keep the country going and you need to be better rewarded. NASUWT stands shoulder to shoulder with the POA – your fight is our fight.”

Mr Roach, who is also chairman of the TUC’s anti-racism task force, praised the union’s work in fighting for racial justice in workplaces.

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