Socialist Worker

Local government round-up

Issue No. 2408

Wage cut suspended for talks   

Following a strike threat, private care firm Your Choice Barnet (YCB) has temporarily suspended a wage cut while talks take place at conciliation service Acas. 

Unison union members at YCB were set to strike last Wednesday following a 100 percent vote to strike. 

Bosses agreed to restore pay next month after a 9.5 percent pay cut while further negotiation takes place.

Workers might still strike if the union and employers fail to reach an agreement by 12 July.

Barnet Unison chair Helen Davies spoke to Socialist Worker in a personal capacity. 

“Without the solid vote to strike and announcing the walkout, YCB would not have backed down,” she said.


Workers are enraged at plans by Kirklees Council in west Yorkshire to cut up to 1,400 jobs in the next two years. The Unison branch met immediately and resolved to ballot its 6,500 members in local government.

But bosses agreed to hold urgent talks not long after. 

The talks were welcomed. But it’s clear the council is not going to reverse its attacks, which it blames on government funding cuts. 

Council bosses have also proposed various attacks on redundancy rights. 

And they suggest a managers’ charter to decide who has a job and who does not.

Bosses also plan to bring in the ‘‘Bradford formula’’—a method of sacking workers for sickness absence.  

Unison is set to meet on Wednesday of next week to decide its next move.

Nick Ruff, Kirklees Unison branch chair (pc)


Unison union members in local government in Scotland began a consultative ballot over pay on Monday of last week.

Employers’ organisation Cosla rejected the union’s pay claim of £1 extra an hour. 

The bosses claim an agreement has already been struck for this year’s pay claim. 

Cosla imposed a 1 percent offer for 2013/14 for two years after union members narrowly voted against strikes to accept the offer last year.

Workers should vote yes in the ballot and be prepared to strike to force Cosla bosses to pay better wages.

The ballot ends on 7 July.

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Article information

Tue 17 Jun 2014, 17:14 BST
Issue No. 2408
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