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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-11222: Neil Findlay (Lothian)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 12 September 2017

To ask the Scottish Government how many fire and rescue service support staff have seen their pay reduced in 2017; what the reason for this has been; what the average reduction was, and what support it is providing to the staff to protect them from the impact of low pay.

Answered by: Annabelle Ewing 27 September 2017

Staffing and pay are operational matters for the Board of the SFRS.

SFRS have confirmed that as a result of the Support Staff Pay and Reward Framework introduced in August 2015, and with the agreed 2 year pay protection period ceasing in February 2017, 99 staff are currently in detriment as at June 2017. This is a reduction from 226 when the Framework was introduced. The average amount of pay protection is £2.2k.

With Scottish Government encouragement, the SFRS became accredited as a Living Wage employer in May 2017. Scottish Government has long championed payment of the Living Wage and the real benefits to our economy of treating people who work more fairly. Addressing low pay is an explicit objective of our Public Sector Pay Policy and we have taken direct action to raise minimum rates of pay for those parts of the public sector under our direct responsibility.

Through development opportunities and the 'Invest in You' programme, SFRS is also working with all staff to give them the skills and confidence to realise their career aspirations and gain promotion where it is wanted.