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Strikes loom in schools and cleansing

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Strikes loom in schools and cleansing as ballot notice served to councils over “derisory and unacceptable” pay offer

Nearly 10,000 school support and refuse and cleansing workers will be balloted for industrial action from next week, after GMB Scotland reps served statutory notice on councils this afternoon (Thursday 9 September) against a “derisory” pay offer for 2021.

It follows a consultative ballot of GMB Scotland members across Scottish local government which delivered a 95 per cent rejection of COSLA’s £850 a year increase for staff earning up to £25,000 a year.

The ballot will run from Thursday 16 September to Thursday 7 October, with the prospect of strike action affecting school cleansing, janitorial services, refuse collections, and street sweeping from late October onwards.

GMB Scotland Senior Organiser Drew Duffy said:

“COSLA’s offer amounts to little more than £15 a week more for our frontline workers in local government, it is derisory and unacceptable.

“The dither and delay on delivering proper value means they are still mired on pre-pandemic pay rates – there has been no “thank you” for these workers.

"Council and political leaders have said many times during this pandemic they value the work of our members, well it's time they put their money where their mouth is.

“The threat of disruptive strikes in schools and community services is now likely, and unless COSLA chiefs table an improved offer the blame will lie with them.”


Contact: GMB Scotland Senior Organiser Drew Duffy on 07912 560806 or GMB Scotland Communications on 07976 447077.