Fair Pay for RSA!

On 19th September 2023, workers at RSA staged the first industrial action at the organisation in its 270 year history.

This came after months of attempts to delegitimise and weaken the democratic mandate of the workers by rejecting repeated requests for recognition, obstructing and delaying during the statutory recognition and pay claim processes, and refusing to negotiate in good faith.

With no signs of an improved long-term offer nor negotiation talks, the union has voted for further industrial action in an effort to bring management back to the table.

What are our demands?

Over the past six months, the workers have been meeting with RSA management around a pay claim first submitted in January 2023. This claim applies to the whole bargaining unit and asks for:

  1. A flat £2800 salary increase
  2. An increase from 5.5% to 8% pension contributions
  3. A £400 allowance for staff who don’t benefit from hybrid working

How did we get to this point?

  • In April, the majority of the bargaining unit (constituting both of members and non-members) rejected the RSA’s initial pay offer of £1000.
  • In July, we accepted management’s offer of mediated negotiations facilitated by ACAS. However, ACAS informed us of management's refusal to commit to moving beyond their initial offer, thereby making mediated negotiations redundant.
  • On 7 August, members again unanimously rejected management’s offer of non-monetary awards and the original £1000 as an interim offer. On 8 August, we balloted for industrial action.
  • On 22 August, Andy Haldane, RSA CEO, notified staff he would be unilaterally implementing the £1000 already rejected by members. The increase did not apply to all staff in the bargaining unit.
  • On 4 September, IWGB notified the RSA of industrial action to take place on 19th and 21st September.
  • On 15 September, Andy Haldane offered a £500 one-off payment, which was unanimously rejected by members in favour of bargaining for an improved, permanent pay rise.
  • In October, the RSA was found to have broken employment law for firing a member of staff for union activity.
  • In October and November, in the absence of an invitation to negotiations by management, the union voted for continued strike action.

How can I support?

For all of these actions, sharing them on social media increases impact:

  1. Support the workers by donating to our strike fund
  2. Share our posts on Twitter or vocally support us on LinkedIn
  3. Do not cross the picket line while the boycott is ongoing
  4. If you are an RSA Fellow, email the RSA or your Fellowship Councillor asking RSA management to negotiate with the union in good faith
  5. If you are a Fellow, start a thread on Circle showing support
  6. If you are a speaker at an RSA event, pull out of the event and share your reasons publicly
  7. If you are an RSA stakeholder, speak out in support of the union at your meeting or event

Email rsa@iwgb.co.uk if you have any other ideas!

© Independent Workers Union of Great Britain 2024

Designed and built at the IWGB with love, care and coffee. Hasta la victoria siempre.

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