HKPTU News Reporter
The civil service pay adjustment affects all teaching and non-teaching staff of government and aided schools. Many teachers are worried about when the 2014 pay rise will be approved, and the Hong Kong Professional Teachers?Union (“HKPTU”) is also concerned about the situation.
Civil service pay adjustment was not a controversial topic in the past. This year, however, the Government refused to re-organise the agenda items and as a result the Finance Committee of the Legislative Council (“LegCo”) had to review several controversial proposals before approving the civil service pay rise. This caused severe delay of the pay rise and made the civil servants and teachers suffer.
The Government’s refusal to re-organise agenda items affects people’s lives
Most of the LegCo members support the pay rise for civil servants. Although some members of the Pan-Democratic Camp decided to start a “non-cooperation movement” in the LegCo by obstructing controversial proposals with filibusters, they promised not to obstruct the proposals that affect people’s lives, including the civil service pay adjustment and various school construction projects. It is regrettable that the Government tried to delay the review of the civil service pay adjustment proposal by putting it on as the 37th agenda item, which will only be reviewed after many other controversial projects like landfill extension and incinerator construction, and the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge. The Government also withdrew some funding applications for school construction projects, wanting to put all the blame on the LegCo members.
On 21st December 2014, a joint press conference was called by Mr. Fung Wai-wah, the President of HKPTU, and 17 labour unions of civil servants and subvented bodies. They demanded the Government to re-organise the agenda items of the LegCo Finance Committee, as a way to review changes on payments of civil servants sooner. There is rumour that if the LegCo fails to approve the pay rise by the end of the 2014-2015 session, the Government may not request for additional funding for the back pay. This would cause permanent loss for one hundred thousand teaching and non-teaching staff. HKPTU demands the Government’s clarification on this rumour.
Mr. Ip Kin-yuen, the representative of HKPTU in LegCo, requested many times for the re-organisation of the agenda items. During internal meetings with Pan-Democractic Camp LegCo members, he also requested to make sure that pay rise for civil servants can be approved as soon as possible.
Petition to the Government
HKPTU started a petition to demand the Government to re-organise the agenda items, as a way to review changes on payments of civil servants sooner.
Review the civil service pay adjustment ASAP
‧ the Government to re-organise the agenda items to allow the the LegCo Finance Committee to review the civil service pay adjustment proposal ASAP.
‧ LegCo members to ensure that the civil service pay adjustment proposal is approved ASAP.