Petition for Change
This month The Digger and BAJR are launching the Petition for Change. The
petition is aimed at the employers of archaeologists and of other workers in
heritage sector. It draws attention to the lack of career structure and
long hours and the poor job security that we all know and love. The petition
calls for the Institute for Field Archaeologists (IFA) to increase its
minimum pay rate to a level deemed by the European Union necessary to lead a
decent life (the ‘European Decency Threshold’) and to expel any of its
members that do not comply.
The editors of The Digger said, ‘The idea is that people take the petitions
workplaces for their colleagues to sign, and then return the sheets to us or
BAJR. We’ll forward them to the IFA. The more people who sign the more
impact the petition will have. The petition highlights problems faced by all
workers. Let’s use it as a tool to improve all our lives at work.’
In a recent poll on BAJR 92% of people said that the current IFA recommended
minimum pay rate of £215 per week was too low. It would cost the IFA nothing
increase its minimum to a decent level. And yet this change would mean a
improvement to the lives of thousands of low-paid workers in the heritage
The petition will be publicised to the CBA, Rescue, Britarch, APPAG etc. The
text of the petition is as follows:
End poverty pay in the Heritage Sector!
The Institute of Field Archaeologists (IFA) estimate that archaeology
million to the economy. Many sites that archaeologists work on yield big
developers; some are multi-million pound projects. Yet many archaeologists
Heritage Sector workers earn less than £13,000 pa, and some earn less than
£8,000 pa despite
having high practical skills and/or good academic qualifications.
Field archaeologists and Heritage Sector workers also work long hours,
unpaid overtime. Few can afford mortgages. Pension provision and sick pay is
existent for those on short contracts. Too many archaeologists are forced to
leave the industry due to poor pay, poor job security and no hope of moving
up a career ladder.
In July, a million Unison, GMB and T&G members went on strike for a 6% pay
public sector workers. We also demand an end to low pay. With decent wages
structure comes respect and pride in the profession.
We call on the employers to end poverty pay for archaeologists and others in
Sector and to introduce a clear and standardised career structure with a
work description for each grade.
We also call on the IFA to raise its minimum pay rate to the European
Decency Threshold of
£280 per week (£7.34 per hour) with immediate effect, and to enforce this by
expelling units and unit managers that do not comply.
Download the petition from BAJR:
as a rtf document here:
or a pdf document here: