The landmark deal will see equal pay in place by 2020, with many staff set to receive better pay as a result. Some of the lowest paid staff could benefit by up to £7,000 per year.
Prospect have managed to negotiate this offer directly with the Met Office despite the government’s cap on public sector pay.
Prospect first asked the Met Office to conduct an equal pay audit in 2015. It showed the pay gap between men and women was 10.7% and this meant senior female meteorologists earned about £7,000 less than male colleagues. This audit was followed by the launching of high profile legal action for equal pay by 76 women, supported by Prospect. This legal action will now been settled as part of the deal.
Mike Clancy, Prospect general secretary said:
“This deal shows the results that trade unions can get to make our workplaces fairer.
“It is disgraceful that in 2017 the gender pay gap still stands at 18% nationally.
“Prospect speaks up for our members on equal pay wherever they are. And in the public sector where the gender pay gap is made worst by the pay cap, we are campaigning to scrap the cap too.
“But we can only do this because people join and support unions like ours, so if you are not a member of a union yet, now is the time join.”
Helen Stevens, Prospect negotiations officer said:
“Prospect is the leading trade union for people working in the science and technology sector.
“I would urge anyone who wants to work to campaign to close the gender pay gap and address other workplace issues to join us.”
Gordon Hutchinson, Prospect NEC member and staff representative at the Met Office said:
“This deal addresses Prospect members’ concerns over equal pay, while also being affordable for the Met Office.
“Our members want to be part of a world-class national meteorological service that is sustainable and fair.
“Prospect is a professional, evidence-based Trade Union; our members have been reasonable in their requests and our legal arguments were clearly of a high quality.
“Strength of feeling and also a willingness to back it up with action when needed has resulted in clear improvement for Met Office staff.
“Prospect will now be campaigning for the Met office to achieve full pay negotiation freedoms from government, to help them maintain the Met Office’s status as a world leading meteorological and science-based organisation.”
Over 90% of Prospect members at the Met Office took part in the vote on the new pay deal, which three-quarters voting to accept the deal.
Prospect is campaigning on behalf of its members in the public sector for equal pay, to end to the pay cap and for a new vision of modern well-funded public services. You can find out more at psworkingforyou.org.uk