Thursday, 27 November 2008

Edinburgh Evening News: Scottish Water look to calm fears over staff strike

Published Date: 27 November 2008
BOSSES at Scottish Water moved today to reassure customers as workers started a 24 hour strike over pay.
The stoppage, which started at noon, was expected to affect the company's operations across the whole country.

Three unions Unison, Unite and the GMB, are involved in the dispute, which centres on a three per cent rise over 15 months which the unions say Scottish Water has imposed on employees.

Today Scottish Water said contingency plans had been put in place to ensure that normal service was maintained during the strike.

Peter Farrer, Scottish Water's Customer Service Delivery Director, said: "We have a committed team in place, determined to maintain a normal service for our customers. I am confident we can continue to deliver this."

Unison Scottish organiser Dave Watson said as a highly successful public corporation which answers to the Scottish Government, Scottish Water could afford a better rise for its workers but claimed the Government was preventing a settlement.

He said the deal was effectively worth 2.4 per cent this year while inflation had been running at more than twice that rate.

He added: "Scottish Water has the money to make a reasonable pay deal - the problem is the Scottish Government is blocking them from doing so."

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