Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Trade Unions add their voice to the chorus demanding an end to the bonus culture

Speaking at this week's TUC annual congress, a significant number of major Trade Union leaders have declared their opposition to the bonus culture in both the private and public sectors. The most outspoken of the leaders was undoubtedly Gerry Doherty, general secretary of the transport union TSSA, who told delegates, "The bonus culture has no place in society. It's pure greed. This is wrong, it has to stop and it has to come from the trade union movement. Greed has to go and we have to tell the government that." Doherty highlighted recently published statistics that Thomas Cook's chief executive took home over £7m in 2008, while 2,800 employees lost their jobs at the travel company.

David Wilshire, of the Communication Workers Union also pointed his finger of blame at Adam Crozier, Chief Executive of Royal Mail Group: "It's unacceptable that while postal workers have a pay freeze imposed and are having their terms and conditions threatened, Crozier has enjoyed a payout of £995,500 in 2008-2009."

A call for head teachers' pay to be limited and to be made public was made by Brian Cookson of teaching union NASUWT. "Of course teachers must be properly remunerated, but can we say from the size of these salaries that it's more difficult to run a school that a country? The bonus culture has no place in the state education system. Pay and rewards of head teachers must be made public."
  • Which other organisations have recently called for bonuses and salaries to be restricted?
  • Research activity: Which major companies are represented by each of the TU representatives who have called for an end to the bonus culture?
  • Dodgy activity for teachers 1: compare the salaries of the different groups of employees within the education sector.
  • Dodgy activity for teachers 2: compare the salary of a head teacher with that of senior managers in other professions.
  • "Can we say that it's more difficult to run a school than a country" Explore the salaries of MPs and ministers in the UK government.


  1. Would be interesting to know how union leaders are remunerated. Any ideas?

  2. Anonymous: The following article: "Trade union leaders receive huge pay rises despite redundancies and salary cuts among members" gives some indication of current TU leaders' salaries. Should work if posted into Explorer

  3. following the first comment
    it will be a good idea to create a watch dog for the executives'remuneration and compensation in the union.