Northern Ireland

Civil service pay offer accepted by unions

Dispute over pay had led to civil servants taking part in 24-hour strike in January

Finance minister Caoimhe Archibald
Stormont finance minister Caoimhe Archibald.

The threat of further industrial action by civil servants in the north has been averted after unions accepted a pay offer by Stormont’s finance minister.

Caoimhe Archibald has welcomed the decision by unions to accept a 5% pay increase, a one-off non-consolidated payment of £1,500, and contractual progression for those eligible.

The Sinn Féin minister placed the offer on the table in February, a month after civil servants took part in a 24-hour strike over pay parity across the UK.

The British government had provided Stormont £3.3bn following the restoration of the Assembly and Executive to stabilise public sector services, with £688m earmarked for settling pay disputes.

“As the Minister with responsibility for the civil service, I was pleased to be able to move quickly to make the 2023 pay offer,” she said on Monday.

“This pay award recognises the important work being done by civil servants in helping to deliver public services. I am pleased unions have accepted the offer.”

The minister added: “We will be keeping staff updated and arrangements are being made to ensure payment of the award in May for industrial civil servants and June for non-industrial civil servants.”