UNISON, the largest union in local government, met yesterday to discuss COSLA’s latest 3.5% pay offer. The union unanimously agreed to reject this revised offer outright and voted overwhelmingly to continue with their strike plans in councils across Scotland.
UNISON rejected the offer as it has not sufficiently improved, falls far short of the Joint Trade Union’s claim (submitted in January) and falls far short of the current rate of inflation, which continues to rise.
The union also made the point that the offer falls far short of the offer made to council workers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland who have been offered a £1925 flat rate uplift, which equates to a 10.5% increase for those on the lowest wages.
Johanna Baxter, UNISON head of local government said: “This is another derisory pay offer. We are in a ridiculous position of both our employers and the Scottish Government agreeing this 3.5% pay offer is not nearly enough, but both are at logger heads about who should pay for it.
Meanwhile council workers – over half earn less than £25k per year – are worrying about paying the bills. Inflation is predicted to rise to 13.5% and our members are offered a real-terms pay cut which will plunge more of them into debt.
We have written to COSLA to tell them the strike continues in waste and recycling and we will confirm dates for strike action in schools and early years in the coming days.”