Stalemate in Construction Industry Joint Council pay talks

PrintThe latest pay talks for the largest construction industrial agreement have broken up after unions and employers were unable to agree a deal.

Around 500,000 construction workers are affected by The Construction Industry Joint Council Working Rule Agreement.

The unions involved in the negotiations UCATT, Unite and GMB dismissed an initial offer of a 3.5 per cent pay rise over two years as “insulting” last month.

Now further talks have reached an impasse.

Construction employers will seek a new mandate from their organisations and it is hoped that talks can be reconvened in the next few weeks.

The annual pay date for the agreement is the last Monday in June (27th June 2016).

Brian Rye, acting general secretary of construction union UCATT, said: “The employer’s offer was well below the expectations of the construction workforce. To be worthwhile a multi-year deal must be in the best interests of the industry, the employers and workers. What was being offered did not meet these objectives.”

Unite national officer for construction, John Allott, said: “We are seeking a well-above inflation increase because this particular agreement has been left behind by other construction agreements.

“These other national agreements are seeing this one lagging behind. We need an attractive pay offer to attract new young workers into the industry, otherwise the skills shortages and low productivity will continue to hold back this sector. We want a workplace where our members are valued by the employer and rewarded accordingly.”

Phil Whitehurst, GMB national officer for construction, said: “The CIJC working rule agreement needs to be overhauled and brought into the 21st century instead of being levelled at minimum rates of pay, this agreement is by far the lowest paid one in construction and the employers must realise that and come to the table with realistic increases to secure a two year deal which will give the industry stability, only then will the trade unions put a realistic final offer from the employers to their members with a recommendation to accept, we have not reached that position yet.”

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