Date: Fri 10 October 2008
UNISON to recommend rejection of new pay offer
Scotland's largest council union, UNISON, agreed to recommend that
their members reject the latest below-inflation pay offer made by
Scotland's councils at a meeting of the union's local government
branches in Glasgow today (Friday).
UNISON will now institute a full ballot of their 100,000 members
in Scottish Local Government - which will be declared in early November.
Following two highly successful one-day strikes by around 150,000
UNISON, GMB and Unite members in the last two months, local government
employers increased their 2.5% offer to 3% for this year (April
08-April 09) - still less than the current rate of inflation. In
addition they demanded that the unions commit to a fixed pay rise
of 2.5% for 2009-10 - whatever the inflation rate.
UNISON Regional Officer and lead negotiator, Dougie Black , said
"It is clear our activists do not accept that this offer is good
enough. Our members, like others are suffering from the effects
of the economic downturn. The recent increases in inflation - especially
in basic necessities like food and fuel - impact particularly hard
on low-paid members, and a 3% increase does not deliver the kind
of help they need. Bankers and fat cats in the city get help - it
is time for hard-pressed public service workers to get that help.
Council staff in Scotland have delivered around £200 m worth of
efficiency savings that councils should share with staff as well
as with council tax payers."
UNISON will also be making it clear to members that it will take
a lot of pressure to get the employers to improve their offer. Stephanie
Herd - Chair of UNISON's Local Government Group said "UNISON will
be making it clear to our members that it will take a lot of pressure
to get the employers to improve their offer. The employers are determined
to keep the pay rise at the level of the current offer - if members
hope to shift them we need to strengthen our industrial action strategy
and members will need to be prepared to increase the level of their
activity. There is no point simply voting to reject the offer -
we have to intensify our industrial and political campaigning."
For Further Information Please Contact: Dougie Black (Secretary
- TU negotiators) - 07958 121 851(m) Glyn Hawker (Scottish Organiser
- Bargaining and Equal pay) - 07876 441 237(m) Stephanie Herd (Chair
- Local Government Group) - 07989 544 162 (m) Chris Bartter (Communications
Officer) - 07715 583 729 (m)