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26July 2022

Thousands of council workers across Scotland have voted to take industrial action which will disrupt schools, early years centres, nurseries and waste and recycling centres across Scotland, in the largest strike ballot amongst council workers in over a decade, UNISON, Scotland largest local government union, said when they were announcing the results their strike ballot today (Tuesday).

UNISON members in all councils across Scotland overwhelmingly voted to reject the COSLA final pay offer of 2% with nine local authority branches exceeding the required 50% turnout threshold required by the Trade Union Act.

Johanna Baxter, UNISON head of local government said: “COSLA leaders meet on Friday and must put an improved offer on the table if we are to avoid large-scale disruption to council services across Scotland.

Council workers south of the border yesterday were offered a flat rate uplift of £1925, which for those on the lowest pay equates to a 10.5% increase. You have to wonder why council workers north of the border have only been offered a measly 2% increase when the cost of living continues to spiral. UNISON have been calling for a flat rate payment to help those on lower incomes. Most council workers earn less than £25k per year.

It is clear now that local government workers have had enough and are prepared to strike in the coming weeks unless we see a sensible offer, from COSLA, on the table on Friday. This is the largest strike ballot by local government workers in over a decade and the first-time workers across Scotland have voted to take strike action in these numbers. It really shouldn’t take this for them to receive the recognition, respect and reward that they deserve.”

• UNISON is the largest union in local government.
• The UNISON branches that met the required threshold are: City of Glasgow, Orkney Islands Council, Aberdeenshire Council, East Renfrewshire Council, North Lanarkshire Council, South Lanarkshire Council, Clackmannanshire Council, Stirling Council, Inverclyde.
• COSLA offer is here: https://unison-scotland.org/wp-content/uploads/22-02-28-SJC-Letter-of-Offer.doc
• Trade union pay claim is here: https://unison-scotland.org/wp-content/uploads/SJC-Pay-Claim-2022.pdf
• National Employers for local government services (UK) LOCAL GOVERNMENT PAY 2022 – pay offer: https://unison-scotland.org/wp-content/uploads/Emps-to-NJC-TUs-pay-offer-25Jul22.pdf

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