The Prospect union, which represents over 150,000 science and technology workers in the UK, has called off its national strike action after reaching a deal with the government. The agreement includes a one-off cost-of-living payment and new commitments on potential redundancies.
Prospect members took industrial action earlier this year in a dispute over pay, working conditions and redundancies. The union claims that its members working in the public sector have experienced a real-terms pay cut of 26% since 2010. It also noted the government’s intention to reduce headcount by 20% while also reducing redundancy terms.
Strike action in March saw walkouts at science facilities across the UK, including the British Antarctic Survey, the National Oceanography Centre and the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory.
Prospect has now called an end to its industrial action after members agreed to a settlement that includes a £1500 one-off payment to help with the cost-of-living crisis and a commitment to avoid compulsory redundancies. The government has also agreed to freeze rates of redundancy pay until 2025.
Prospect general secretary Mike Clancy said the settlement ‘shows that unions matter and when we work together, we win: on pay, on redundancy terms, and on job cuts’.