The University have responded to a campaign by the UEA Greens asking for a 10:1 pay ratio between the highest and lowest paid members of UEA by saying that it is already the case.
Part of a wider national 10:1 campaign across universities, president of the UEA Greens Chris Jarvis said: “Universities have the highest average pay ratio of the publics sector and this has been rising in recent years, currently averaging at 15:1.
“This growing inequality is grossly unfair, especially at a time of austerity when public sector workers are being made redundant, and departments of universities are being cut, as we saw with the shutting down of the UEA Music School.”
The campaign was backed by UUEAS environment and ethical issues officers Benjamin Brown and Rosie Rawle. It also asked the vice-chancellor to publish the ratio between the highest and lowest paid workers on campus; commit to working towards a 10:1 pay ratio; pledge to pay directly-employed workers a living wage; and ensure that contractors pay their workers a living wage.
However, a spokesperson for UEA said: “The university has met a number of the pledges set out by UEA Greens in their campaign. The ratio of the pay of the 10% highest paid workers to that of the 10% lowest paid is already well below 10:1 at 5.4:1. The university has also already committed to pay a minimum of £7.20 per hour, the current living wage, once the current pay round has been settled.
“The vice-chancellor’s salary and those of the highest paid members of staff are published annually in the university’s financial statements. These are publically available on the UEA website. We do not insist that our contractors pay their workers a living wage and it is not something that we are considering.”
In the financial statement for 2011 states the vice-chancellor’s total salary as £241,000, down from £245,000 in 2010.