Monday, 2 August 2010

Overwhelming rejection of local government pay offer

Date: 2 August 2010

UNISON Scotland today announced the result of a consultative pay ballot of its local government members.

A total of 80% voted to reject the council pay offer, which was for a 3 year deal of 1% in the first year, 0% in the second and 0.5% in the third.

UNISON and the other main unions had recommended a no vote.

Stephanie Herd, Chair of UNISON’s Scottish Local Government Committee, said: “This overwhelming rejection shows how strongly our members feel about an offer that is in reality a three year pay cut.

“Not only would our members and their families lose out, it would be bad news for local economies across Scotland as members have less money to spend in local shops and businesses.

"It is not surprising that our members feel angry and voted no, when chief officials in local authorities were awarded 2.5% and teachers 2.4%.

“It is unacceptable to attempt to tie many of the lowest paid public sector workers, who deliver essential front line services, into a 3 year deal worth 1.5%.”

Dougie Black, UNISON trade union side secretary and lead negotiator, said: “We are meeting with members of our Local Government Committee today and with the other unions later this week to decide on the next steps in our pay campaign.

“Industrial action is one of a range of possible options we will be considering.

“We will also be seeking an early meeting with the employers to re-open negotiations following this decisive rejection of their offer.”

Notes for editors:

1. Three unions make up the trade union side of the Scottish Joint Council: UNISON, Unite, GMB.

2. Both Unite and GMB held their own consultative arrangements over a similar timescale, resulting in rejection of the offer.

3. UNISON represents around 100,000 Scottish Council staff.

4. The unions’ claim is for a one year deal of 3% or £600, whichever is the greater. It includes a £7 per hour minimum wage, with the settlement weighted towards the lower paid.


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