Local government unions accept pay deal

Unite and GMB members in local government have voted to accept the local government employers revised offer of 2.5 per cent. This leaves Unison (which has the bulk of the membership) balloting for industrial action, the result of which is expected at the end of October.

GMB members voted seven to one to accept the deal. Brian Strutton, GMB national secretary for public services said, ³GMB members have voted overwhelmingly to accept the local government pay offer. The size of the majority is surprising given that the offer is worth a little over 2.5% and is well short of inflation. But GMB members have made a realistic assessment and decided to take the offer.

³This has been a bad year for public sector pay and GMB members want to get this round out of the way to focus on the negotiation for 2008.²

The Unite ballot saw 57 per cent vote in favour Peter Allenson, Unite national organiser for public services said: “This is a clear result from our members but equally it comes with a clear message that it has been accepted grudgingly rather than being embraced.”

Meanwhile, there has been a spate of other strikes in local government. Care workers in Glasgow won their regarding dispute after going out on strike for two weeks. Care workers had been in dispute over being put on a lower grade as social work assistants, in some cases costing them up to £4,000 a year.
Two weeks of all out strikes along with a threat to ballot other social care staff to take action in support handed the care workers victory.

Mental health staff in Manchester have been taking strike action in support of Karen Reissmann, while was sacked by her local NHS trust for bring it into disrepute. She says that she was sacked for trade union duties including criticising cuts in services.


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