UCU is concerned that the status of further and higher education staff in Northern Ireland has been progressively undermined by salaries being held down, increasing marketisation and an erosion of professional autonomy.
The union would like to see greater recognition of the vital contribution made by staff working in further and higher education, supported by policies which make Northern Ireland a more attractive place for people to live and work.
What is each party proposing?
Alliance Party of Northern Ireland
- Renewing efforts to tackle equal pay as well as requiring public audits of the gender profile of pay by large employers
- Support increasing the tax-free allowance for income tax
Democratic Unionist Party
- Keep household tax the lowest in the UK
Social Democratic and Labour Party
- Extend the Living Wage
- Campaign for a Living Wage
- Work for enhanced workers’ rights
Ulster Unionist Party
- Increase the national minimum wage over the next 3 years to rebalance the shortfalls from previous years
- Support measures to increase the personal tax allowance to £12,500 by 2020
- Oppose reintroducing the 50% top rate of income tax for people earning over £150,000
Sinn Fein and the SDLP have both called for extensions of the living wage in Northern Ireland. The UUP has proposed an increase in the minimum wage to rebalance previous shortfalls and would support the raising of personal tax allowance to £12,500 by 2020. Alliance has also pledged support for an increase in the tax-free allowance, as well as renewed efforts on equal pay.