Socialist Worker

Birmingham GMB in single status strike threat

Issue No. 1000

GMB members have overwhelmingly voted to reject Birmingham City Council’s pay and grading proposals this week at one of the first meetings organised by GMB throughout the city.

The proposals are the result of lengthy discussions between the city council and the unions concerning the 1997 Single Status Agreement.

The proposals included:

A new pay and grading structure to be implemented in September 2007.

Performance related pay progression

Changes to holiday entitlement

Comprehensive review of allowance payments

Termination of all bonus agreements

A new flexibility agreement called Employee Bargain

GMB Regional Organiser, Dominic Hinks, said, “Our members have listened to GMB concerns that were presented to them on the latest offer from BirminghamCityCouncil. GMB is deeply concerned that the scope of the Pay and Grading Review is now so wide it leaves very little time for the City Council to consult and negotiate meaningfully with the unions with a view to reaching an agreement within its workforce.

'Birmingham’s new proposed pay structure and their proposal on holiday entitlement continue to discriminate against low paid female workers and will not resolve their equal pay issues. Indeed it is my view that it will result in a further wave of equal pay claims against Birmingham City Council.

'Other issues such as Performance Related Pay, a review of allowances and Employee Bargain lack any real detail. The imposed termination of all bonuses will result in some of our members losing thousands of pounds.

'GMB members sent a clear message last night that the current proposals are not acceptable and unless substantial improvements are made there remains a strong possibility of industrial unrest and lengthy litigation against Birmingham City Council to force them to meet their equal pay liability. If the City Council is unwilling to do so then the GMB will support any member who wishes to pursue their full statutory entitlement under Equal Pay Legislation”.

Further meetings across the City are planned for the end of this week and the following week.

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Article information

Thu 3 May 2007, 12:15 BST
Issue No. 1000
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