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Glasgow faces COP26 bins and schools strike as pay talks stall

Friday, October 15, 2021

Glasgow faces COP26 bins and schools strike as pay talks stall

GMB Scotland members employed by Glasgow City Council have voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action over their pay, which would see strikes across the city’s cleansing service and schools during the International Climate Conference, COP26.

Pay talks with COSLA, the umbrella body that represents each of Scotland’s local authorities, have stalled, with the employer refusing to budge from an £850 flat rate offer to all local government workers – far short of the £2,000 pay claim that was submitted by the joint trade unions GMB, Unison & Unite.

Following a ballot of cleansing workers and school support staff across the country, Glasgow is the largest of 5 councils in Scotland that could see strike action as soon as November 1st.

96.9% of returned ballots in Glasgow were in favour of strike action.

GMB Scotland represents close to 900 workers in Glasgow’s refuse & cleansing service and a further 600 across Glasgow schools providing cleaning, janitorial and catering services.

GMB Glasgow Cleansing Convenor Chris Mitchell said:

“Over the past 18 months throughout this awful pandemic, essential services across Scotland have been held together by an army of low paid workers.

“We were called key workers, even Covid heroes, but while politicians were happy to applaud us on Thursday nights, they’ve never put their hands in their pockets to pay us properly.

“The eyes of the world will be on Glasgow during COP 26, and our politicians now have a choice – will they fairly reward the frontline workers who got the country through the pandemic, or will they risk embarrassing the city and the country on an international stage?

“The message that our members have sent with this ballot result is clear. We are taking a stand for what we deserve, and we believe the people will stand with us.”


Contact: Scott Rogers, GMB Scotland Communications, on 07525224527.