Only improved local government pay offer can void strikes, unions warn
Scottish local government unions have suspended preparations for industrial action ballots of their memberships ahead of talks next week but have warned that COSLA must “make good” on an improved local government pay offer to avoid strikes.
GMB Scotland, the union for local government workers, will meet with representatives of COSLA on August 18.
Ahead of the talks, the union has written to employer-side representatives for Scottish local authorities, warning bosses “must make good” on the delivery of an improved pay offer for council workers if strikes are to be avoided.
In an act of good faith, Scottish local government unions have suspended preparations for industrial action ballots of their memberships in school support staff and refuse and cleansing services ahead of the meetings.
Plans for industrial actions were put in place last month in response to the existing offer of £800 increase on the basic rate of pay for workers earning up to £25,000 a year, with COSLA chiefs refusing to commit to the delivery of the £500 ‘Thank You’ payment and backpay provisions of the offer.
GMB Scotland senior organiser Drew Duffy said: “Strike action affecting school support staff and cleansing workers across Scotland can be avoided if COSLA bring forward an improved offer that is deserving of our members’ consultation.
“Weeks and months have now passed leaving key workers without a proper pay rise while Scottish Government Ministers and COSLA representatives pass the buck of responsibility to each other.
“The applause for our key workers from the political class has long since finished yet our members remain on the frontline of service delivery in our communities.
“Next week COSLA must make good on tabling an offer that reflects the proper value these workers deserve after everything they have done for all of us over the last eighteen months.”