The one-off payment of £1000 to all Lloyds staff in grades A-G is to be welcomed but why didn’t the bank just negotiate a proper pay deal which could have dealt with the cost of living crisis once and for all. We’ve been telling it for months about the cost of living crisis and the effects spiralling inflation would have on the living standards of Lloyds staff. Regular pay is falling at its fastest rate in more than a decade when taking into account rising prices according to the Office for National Statistics. Between February and April, when Accord’s pay deal with the bank was implemented, pay excluding bonuses, fell by 2.2% from a year earlier when adjusted for inflation.
Only 20% of staff said that the 2022 pay deal, which was signed with great fanfare by Lloyds and Accord, exceeded their expectations. [Latest pulse survey] That pay deal, which resulted in average increase of 3.6% at a time when inflation was running at 10%, left all Lloyds staff financially worse off. It was ridiculed by everyone, long-standing Accord members were enraged at their union’s lack of backbone in refusing to campaign against the deal, and it became more embarrassing for the bank with every economic statistic produced by the Government saying the cost of living crisis was getting worse. If the bank had come forward with a realistic pay offer in the first place – reflecting its increased profitability, then there wouldn’t have been the need for this one-off payment. Equally, this payment doesn’t deal with the fundamental problem that 53% of Lloyds staff don’t believe their reward package fairly reflects their role according to the latest pulse survey.
It’s ironic that Accord are now trying to take credit for the one-off payment when it was their rubbish pay deal which created the need for the payment in the first place. It seems that even Unite understand that, which is why they opposed the rubbish pay deal.
The bank has said that the one-off payment will be pro-rated for reduced hours staff. We understand that historically such one-off payments have always been pro-rated, but the bank could easily have easily made an exception on this occasion. We believe that would be supported by the vast majority of Lloyds staff. Energy, fuel and food costs are not pro-rated. In a recent survey, 26% of Lloyds retail staff, many of whom will be working reduced hours, said that they were ‘just about getting by’ or ‘worse’. It’s not too late for the bank to revisit this decision and the extra cost will be a drop in the ocean. And let’s not forget, that the day before the bank announced the one-off payment it agreed to pay £3 million compensation to about 200 HBOS Reading customers. That’s £600 million in total, equivalent to a one-off payment of £17,000 to every Lloyds member of staff.
Members with any questions should contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 262868 (choose Option 1).