Local government employers pledged to provide staff with basic terms and conditions that rival those in the rest of the public sector in a joint statement with union leaders yesterday.
The statement from Unison, GMB and Unite leaders and employer representatives vowed to produce a new national agreement, containing terms and conditions for staff, by the end of the year.
It also signalled both sides’ intention to resolve the current pay dispute – which triggered a two-day strike in July over employers’ 2.45% offer to English, Welsh and Northern Irish staff – as soon as possible.
Employers have long been looking to revise the so-called Green book or single status agreement in order to promote greater flexibility in the local government workforce.
However, the pledge to “include core conditions of service that bear comparison with conditions elsewhere in the public sector” is significant. Unison head of local government Heather Wakefield has said that “conditions such as annual leave, maternity leave, and family-friendly hours are the worst in the public sector”.
Each element of the revised agreement will be subject to an equality impact assessment to insure that it is not discriminatory.
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