Unite members to vote on strike action in council pay row

30 Apr 14
Trade union Unite is to ballot council workers over strike action in a dispute over pay with local government employers – the second union in the sector to do so.

By Richard Johnstone | 30 April 2014

Trade union Unite is to ballot council workers over strike action in a dispute over pay with local government employers – the second union in the sector to do so.

Payslip local government

Unite national officer for local government Fiona Farmer said today that 90% of members had rejected the Local Government Association’s pay offer, which would give most workers a 1% increase, in a consultative ballot. The union will now ask its 70,000 members whether they wish to take strike action. 

‘Our members have decisively rejected the insulting pay offer of 1% and sent a very strong message to local government employers that they need to increase their offer,’ Farmer said.

‘Our members have been experiencing a continuous pay cut in real terms, given that the current Retail Prices Index rate of inflation is running at 2.5%. ‘Take-home pay has been reduced by almost 20% since the coalition came to power. Poverty pay is becoming endemic across local councils and we are seeking a £1 an hour increase across the board for local government workers.’

The ballot will open in early June, with the result known later that month. Farmer said Unite would co-ordinate any industrial action with the other local government trade unions. 

Unison has already announced that it will ballot members over strike action, while the GMB is consulting members over the initial pay offer.


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