A pay rise for Social Care staff

Progress has been made in recruitment into the sector and it is hoped this pay rise will help with that.Progress has been made in recruitment into the sector and it is hoped this pay rise will help with that.
Progress has been made in recruitment into the sector and it is hoped this pay rise will help with that.
Social care staff are to receive an immediate pay increase of 3.3 per-cent, backdated to April 1st, the Scottish Government has announced.

The move, agreed between the Scottish Government and Scottish local authorities organisation, COSLA, is part of a package of measures, the Scottish Government said in a statement, “to support social care workers in recognition of the vital role they are playing during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic”.

Under the terms of the award, social care support workers providing direct adult support will have their pay increased to at least the Real Living Wage rate of £9.30 an hour for all hours worked.

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This includes sleep-overs and hours worked by personal assistants, the government confirmed.

Holyrood is also providing funding to third sector and independent providers specifically to ensure staff receive sick pay if they are off work ill or because they are self-isolating.

In addition, the agreed funding increase to these providers will give them the financial flexibility to increase wages across their organisations, and not just to front-line staff.

Announcing the pay award, Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said: “Scotland’s dedicated social care workers are on the front-line of our national pandemic response. Their work is always hugely valued, and never more so than now.

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“The measures we are announcing in partnership with COSLA today will ensure all people providing adult social care receive the Real Living Wage for every hour worked with immediate effect, rather than having to wait until later in the year.

“As well as providing an uplift in pay for all social care workers, this package ensures social care providers have both flexibility to increase wages across their organisations and the necessary funding for sick pay if their employees are off ill or are self-isolating.”

A spokesperson for Comhairle nan Eilean Siar said that the pay increase “certainly helps in terms of the nation recognising the great efforts our social care workforce are making in the most challenging of times”.

“Over recent months,” the Comhairle’s spokesperson added, “we have made some real inroads into our recruitment challenges. This pay increase could potentially assist further with recruitment, but the biggest challenge we have is with our demographics, with a reducing young workforce to draw from.”

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Mike Kirby, UNISON Scotland secretary, said: “UNISON Scotland welcomes [the] announcement of the updating pay rise for social care workers to at least the Scottish Living Wage, for all hours worked, including sleepovers. The additional assurances on sick pay are welcome.

“While the Scottish Living Wage has been policy over recent years, there have been differences of view over adequate funding being provided by Scottish Government through COSLA, leading to protracted contracting process and delays in money reaching care workers. This deal should remove these obstacles.

“The challenge is now to work with providers to ensure speedy implementation.

“This deal begins to recognise the real value in society of this workforce. When this crisis is over, there must be no slipping back.”

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