Derbyshire workers threaten strike

Approved social workers in Derbyshire have backed further
industrial action after accusing the council of reneging on a pay

After a work-to-rule campaign, around 35 ASWs were awarded two
extra points at the top of their payscale in recognition of extra
duties under the Mental Health Act.

But last week, they voted 90 per cent in favour of withdrawing from
all ASW duties in a consultative ballot, and threaten to stage a
formal ballot next month.

Unison steward Geoff Johnston accused the council of failing to
backdate the full amount owed to lower grades, and of wiping out
the ASWs’ newly won pay differential by introducing a new payscale
for all social work staff.

Johnston said that ASW staffing levels still remained at half the
Department of Health’s recommended levels due to recruitment and
retention problems.

A spokesperson for the council said it was “surprised” by the
ballot and was happy to discuss the issue further.

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