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Church of England clergy demand pay hike for first time in 500-year historical past

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By Reuters: Even the clergy aren’t immune from Britain’s cost-of-living disaster, which has now pressured Church of England vicars to make a proper pay declare for the primary time of their practically 500-year historical past.

The commerce union Unite, which represents greater than 2,000 clergy and lay officers within the Church of England, mentioned on Monday it has demanded a 9.5% enhance within the stipend that clergy obtain, to be paid from April 2024.

“The Church of England has billions in the bank and can fully afford to pay its clergy the modest increase in their stipend they are seeking,” Unite basic Secretary Sharon Graham mentioned, pointing to the ten.3 billion pound ($13.20 billion) funding fund listed within the 2022 Annual Report of the Church Commissioners.

A Church of England spokesperson mentioned it was conscious that its clergy have been coping with a cost-of-living disaster.

“We are mindful of this, and of issues of affordability for dioceses, in the deliberations over the annual recommendations for the minimum and benchmark stipend levels,” the spokesperson mentioned.

The Church final 12 months put aside 3 million kilos for dioceses to make grants to assist clergy combating the rising vitality payments.

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Hundreds of hundreds of British employees have taken strike motion over the previous 12 months, demanding pay rises that higher replicate 40-year highs in inflation.

Unite proposed the clergy’s nationwide minimal stipend rise to 29,340 kilos ($37,600) and the nationwide stipend benchmark be elevated to 31,335 kilos, it mentioned.

“Last year many clergy had to turn to charitable aid because they couldn’t make ends meet,” mentioned Sam Maginnis, a member of the clergy and Unite.

“The proposed increase is necessary to start bringing pay back in line with inflation while addressing the most urgent hardship and anxiety faced by too many clergy and their families.”

The Church of England’s remuneration committee will meet subsequent week to make a advice on the stipend, which then goes to the Archbishop’s Council in September for a ultimate advice.

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