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GMB Calls For Urgent COSLA Talks

Thursday, June 1, 2017

GMB Calls For Urgent COSLA Talks To Avoid Prospect Of ‘Devastating’ Pay Cuts

GMB Scotland has today (Thursday 1 June) written to Scottish local government body COSLA calling for an urgent recall of trade unions and council officials to avoid the prospect of a ‘devastating’ 1 per cent pay imposition on council workers.

In April, 69 per cent of GMB members across local government voted to accept a flat payment of £350 for workers earning below £35,000 a year and a 1 per cent rise for workers earning over £35,000 a year, a deal lifting the earnings of the lowest paid in councils by 18 pence an hour.

However, amid a failure to accept the deal across all local government trade unions, COSLA has warned that it could be forced to impose its fall-back position of a 1 per cent increase across all local government pay points.

After a decade of austerity on local government finances, GMB has also warned that low paid council workers face further financial misery against a backdrop of sluggish economic growth and rising cost of living.

GMB Scotland Senior Organiser Tony Dowling said: “Leaving low paid council workers without a meaningful pay rise this year or have them served with a 1 per cent imposition is not something GMB is prepared to entertain.

The deal we negotiated last spring is not perfect but it can help ease the pressure on occupations like home carers, school cleaners and caterers who have struggled at the coalface of the austerity agenda for the last decade.

GMB says there can be no delay on pay. There’s no magic wand that’s going to resolve the pressures in local government so we have to get back around the table urgently with COSLA to resolve this impasse.

This is no time to play fast and loose with livelihoods and the offer negotiated by the local government trade unions needs to be awarded as soon as possible across all councils and arms-length bodies to avoid devastating real terms pay cuts.”


Contact: GMB Scotland Senior Organiser Tony Dowling on 07958 477859 or Peter Welsh, GMB Scotland Communications, on 07976 447077.