Date: Wed 9 April 2008
Scotland's local government unions reject three-year pay offer
Three unions representing Scotland's Local Government workers (UNISON,
GMB and Unite (T&G)) have rejected a three-year pay offer from CoSLA,
the Local Government employers, it was announced today.
The CoSLA offer given in early March, spanned three years, proposing
rises of 2.5% in 2008, 2.5% in 2009 and a further 2.5% in 2010.
The trade unions have been taking soundings from their members on
this offer. The unions submitted a pay claim looking for a rise
of £1,000 or 5% in 2008, last November.
Trade union side secretary Dougie Black of UNISON Scotland said:
"All three trade unions have rejected the employers offer. There
is a great deal of anger at the employers insistence on a 3 year
deal and their continuing refusal to agree a reopener clause linked
to inflation. The offer is already less than inflation, and without
a re-opener clause our members are being asked to buy a pig in a
Alec McLuckie, Senior Organiser of GMB Scotland said: "Clearly
rejection of this offer places us on a course for industrial action,
and all three trade unions recognise the need to coordinate a joint
campaign supported by campaigning materials and briefings outlining
our concerns with the offer."
Jimmy Farrelly, Senior Organiser of Unite (T&G Scottish section)
said: "The offer doesn't approach the current rate of inflation,
let alone begin to catch up the loss staff have suffered over recent
years and it skews the pay scales, increasing the gap between higher
and lower paid - for our lowest paid workers the increase after
3 years is around 50p! This is effectively a pay cut."
The unions will now call on their members in Local Government to
reject the employers offer in a full consultation.
Dougie Black said: "Councillors should be aware that our members
are serious about this offer being unacceptable. CoSLA have said
they want to make 'efficiency savings so they can reinvest in services.
One of those investments should be in the workforce that delivers
these services. If you want first class public services, if you
want the sick and elderly cared for, your children well-educated
and protected and your streets clean and safe, cutting the pay of
public sector workers is the wrong way to go about it."
Notes for Editors:
1) There are around 220,000 local government staff in Scotland.
2) The unions have also submitted pay claims for local government
workers elsewhere in the UK calling for a similar rise. Both have
as a key element, increases to provide low paid members with a living
wage. (Flat rate claims of £1,000 per year (in Scotland) or 50p
an hour (elsewhere).
For Further Information Please Contact: Dougie Black - Secretary
TU side & UNISON 07958 121 851 (m) Alec McLuckie - GMB 07885 348269
(m) Jimmy Farrelly - UNITE (T&G) 07810 157903 (m)