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Capita staff go on strike over 'meagre' pay rise offer

By Rachel Martin

Published 17/06/2016

Unite officer: Kevin McAdam
Unite officer: Kevin McAdam

Approximately 60 workers have gone on strike at Capita's Belfast offices.

They were among 900 people employees across the UK to take action against the international outsourcing company - which works in areas including HR, IT and payroll support - this week.

The strikes affected the company's life and pensions division, in which workers are seeking a 3% pay increase.

Around 100 people in Northern Ireland work in the affected area of the company, whose clients include Prudential, Royal London, Guardian, Abbey Life, Met Life and Aviva.

Unite regional officer Kevin McAdam accused the firm of "poverty pay" and called on the business's management to come forward with a "realistic pay offer in order to avoid further escalation and unnecessary disruption".

He said: "The workforce roundly rejected management proposals for a meagre 1.5% pay pot, which would have resulted in a real-terms pay cut for 75% of staff and tied pay increases to a flawed and opaque performance-related grading system.

"Strike action was supported in a recent ballot on a three-to-one vote.

"Capita management's failure to make a reasonable pay offer to address poverty pay stands in stark contrast with the recent 16% pay increase they awarded the group's CEO, Andy Parker, and the 9% increase that they gave to the group finance director, Nick Greatorex.

"They now need to get serious and make their workforce a reasonable pay increase offer in order to avoid further escalation in this unnecessary dispute."

A spokeswoman for Capita Life and Pensions said there had been no impact on clients to date. She added: "We are disappointed that the pay proposal, which we believe is a fair and equitable one, has been rejected by around half of the Unite member employees of Capita's life and pensions business. Less than a third of the total workforce in our life and pensions business are Unite members."

Capita bought Northgate Managed Services in 2013.

Belfast Telegraph

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