LG Pay Update

First set of strike dates confirmed

UNISON have this morning served notice on 8 local authorities of strike dates for waste and recycling members. These dates align with the dates also notified to authorities this morning by the GMB.  It is unfortunate that they do not align with the dates Unite have already notified but that was not for the want of trying to achieve an agreed approach.


Please see press release on link below

Strike dates for schools/early years will be confirmed in due course.

We are holding an online general meeting on Thursday 18th August at 6p.m and all members are required to attend. Please see the following brief agenda below for the meeting. If members able to attend please contact the branch on the following e-mail address thomsonl34s@stirling.gov.uk and a link will be forwarded to you prior to the meeting.

Agenda

  • Pay update
  • Motion to transfer monies to IA account

The UNISON Scotland LG leads will be meeting branches with a strike mandate on Monday to discuss preparation for action.

We are also working on supporting materials/advice to members taking action and resources for those who are not so they can demonstrate their support for those Workers taking action on their behalf. 

Further information on all of that will follow asap – you will appreciate that things are moving at pace at the moment but we will, as always we will communicate any developments as soon as we have more detail.

Important Information – Local Government Pay Briefing

Please Read

UNISON Stirling Branch Local Government Pay Briefing

UNISON has sent notice to Stirling Council, and all other local authorities of its intent to ballot for industrial action over pay and the failure to make an acceptable pay offer for this year.

Our pay claim was submitted in February in good time for an offer to be made in time for the implementation date of 1st April.

Only one offer has been made thus far, despite our rejection. The 2% offered to all employees, absolutely ignoring that inflation is currently sitting at 9% and expected to increase further. This is a pay cut in real terms.

There is no recognition of the cost of living crisis affecting everyone and certainly no recognition of the work you have and continue to do throughout the pandemic. Supporting the public and ensuring the people who rely on our services were supported through one of the hardest times in their lives.

This offer of 2% does not even come close to the Scottish Government Pay Policy, even so inflation has run rampant since that was developed.

Remember councillors were given a 5.2% increase to their annual allowance.

We are conducting what is deemed a disaggregated ballot, with individual ballots being held in each local authority at the same time with the same groups of workers.

We will be balloting all Waste, School Staff and Early Years Staff.

These groups of workers have been selected to have the maximum effect disrupting services to bring the employer back round the table. Scottish Government funds councils and we need them to increase funding to councils so we also have to get their attention.

We are asking all Waste, School and Early Years’ staff to look out for your ballot paper in the post, it will be in a blue envelope.

It is vitally important that you complete it and post it in the envelope provided.

Trade unions are required by law to deliver a 50% response rate before we can take any action.

If we do not deliver 50% our members are showing our employers and the Scottish Government that they do not care about pay and our employers will know that we cannot deliver and our strength to negotiate decent pay for you will be gone. Poor pay will be a thing of the future.

By voting in the ballot and returning your paper you will be influencing your own pay and the pay of every other council worker for years to come

Every single ballot counts, even if you don’t want to support the action it is essential you return your ballot paper. We do not want to be short of the 50% by one vote.

Staff not included in this ballot it is essential that your fellow workers feel supported, they are voting on taking action for all our pay.

We need you to promote this action and encourage those being balloted to return their papers.

If you are in the position to, we ask you to consider donating to our strike fund, to ensure that workers taking action on behalf of all of us are not out of pocket.

Remember it is time for every one of us to step up. To ensure that both Councils and Scottish Government

  • Recognise, our workforce
  • Respect the work you do in supporting our communities
  • Reward you for the work you do

As ever we welcome questions and comments from everyone

Please feel free to get in touch e-mail address  thomsonl34s@stirling.gov.u

UNISON secure improved pay offer

UNISON secure improved pay offer for Local Government. Strike action will be suspended whilst we consult members on this new offer.

UNISON Local Government committee met on Friday and agreed to suspend our planned industrial action whilst we consult our LG members on this offer. 

The offer comes after UNISON had threatened to call out school cleaners, school caterers, school janitors, waste, recycling and fleet maintenance service workers or 5 days of strike action in councils across Scotland. As part of escalating action.

Read more…

Pay claim – Industrial action

UNISON, Scotland’s largest local government union, has started to issue formal industrial action ballot papers in a dispute over pay.

COSLA, the umbrella body representing council employers, had previously offered staff earning less than £25,000 a flat rate rise of £800. Last week COSLA came back with a revised offer of £850 – working out at approximately 97p per week for the lowest paid staff.

The union says council staff who have kept services and schools running throughout the pandemic deserve a proper pay rise. They say the latest pay offer falls far short of their pay claim and does little to address low pay which has become endemic following a decade of austerity.

The trade union says that councils have suffered a decade of cuts and jobs losses, and that staff have received year-on-year pay cuts. It has meant delivering services has become increasingly stressful for the workforce.

Pressure is mounting on both COSLA leaders and the Scottish Government to find an urgent resolution to this issue. COSLA leaders met again on Friday (August 27).

UNISON intends to take targeted strike action, which means select groups of workers will be balloted. These include members working in school cleaning, school catering, school janitorial as well as those working in waste and recycling services.

Lorraine Thomson, UNISON Stirling Branch Secretary said: “The last 18 months have taken an enormous toll on council staff who have been working flat out for no reward. Their courage and sacrifices need to be rewarded, yet the employers are failing to recognise their efforts. “These workers, mostly women, are amongst the lowest paid in the country and have seen their pay drop substantially in recent years. The pay offer falls far short of their colleagues in the NHS and local government workers are left feeling exhausted and undervalued. Scotland’s council workers deserve fair pay.”

Johanna Baxter, UNISON Scotland head of local government, said: “We’ve all relied on council staff to keep our communities clean and safe, protect the most vulnerable and to work in our schools throughout successive lockdowns to allow others to work. “Without these workers going above and beyond to keep services running over the past year their colleagues in the NHS would have been left without childcare, our mortuaries would have been overwhelmed, our children would have been left without an education and our elderly would have been left without care. Yet to date they have received no reward or recognition of their efforts at all. It’s simply not good enough – our council staff are worth more.”

LG Pay Update – Revised Offer

You will see that the only change is to add £50 to the flat rate proposed for those earning below £25k per annum.  The rest of the offer remains unchanged. 

COSLA tabled a revised offer at last week’s meeting of the SJC Steering Group – this is at the bottom of the page for your information.  You will see that the only change is to add £50 to the flat rate proposed for those earning below £25k per annum.  The rest of the offer remains unchanged. 

Local Government Committee decision 

Your Local Government Committee met last Thursday to consider the revised offer and considered that this was not a significant improvement to the offer that would necessitate a further member consultation. On this basis the Committee took the unanimous decision to proceed with industrial action plans. 

Letter to COSLA 

UNISON have written to COSLA outlining the LG Committee’s decision.

Local Government Letter to Councilors

Colleagues

UNISON is currently making preparations for an Industrial Action Ballot of members, following the recent pay consultation result, where 87% of those participating rejected the employers offer and 74% indicating they are prepared to take strike action.

Whilst these arrangements are being put in place – we are asking members to contact Your Council’s Leader and we would suggest using the following format, to let them know why you deserve a decent pay rise.

LET THE LEADER KNOW!

  1. About your job
  2. How your job has changed during COVID
  3. But for you – what wouldn’t have been possible
  4. Why you believe your pay should be raised
  5. If you didn’t receive the £500 COVID reward payment – how this made your feel
  6. The Scottish Government have offered other public sector workers rises beyond their own pay policy. This is unfair, at the very least parity should apply. – this is both a moral and political issue.
  7. Homeworking – The employer has refused to pay the reasonable HMRC allowance of £6.00 per week (it’s a disgrace that workers are having to pay for service delivery).

Who to contact?

Scott Farmer (SNP) as Council Leader and
Email address: farmers@stirling.gov.uk
Stirling Council, Old Viewforth, Stirling, FK8 2ET

Danny Gibson (Labour) as Depute Leader.Email address: gibsond@stirling.gov.uk
Stirling Council, Old Viewforth, Stirling, FK8 2ET

Any decision to improve the current offer will be taken by Council Leaders across Scotland.

Please take a few minutes to send this communication, it will ensure a clear message from our members is delivered directly.

IT’S YOUR PAY – FIGHT FOR IT!

Thanks
Lorraine Thompson
Branch Secretary

UNISON