Local Government workers, members of the trade union, Unite have voted to reject the COSLA pay offer by an overwhelming majority of 83.3%.
The ballot was used as a first step prior to Unite potentially launching an all-Scotland wide legal industrial ballot of its 14,000 plus membership in local government including craft workers.
The trade union’s Local Authority and Craft Workers Committees covered by the local government pay offer have now written to the First Minister to inform her of the result, and the need for immediate intervention before the dispute escalates to widespread industrial action.
This week, Unite Scotland wrote to the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, requesting her intervention into the dispute.
Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish Secretary, said:
“Unite has received an overwhelming mandate to move forward with an industrial action ballot from our members in local government. There is palpable anger that local government has become the forgotten section of our public services, particularly after a year of the pandemic.
“More than 80% of our members have rejected the current pay offer, and also shown a willingness to take strike action. This should be a wake-up call to COSLA and the Scottish Government to get back to the negotiating table with an improved offer, which properly values and rewards the workforce who have gone above and beyond the call of duty.”
“The First Minister needs to intervene immediately because she can’t continue to proclaim the SNP is the anti-austerity party, while they have presided over a decade of austerity in local government.
“If the First Minister doesn’t act then we will have no option but to ballot all our members across Scotland on strike action – action that can quickly and easily be avoided.”