Socialist Worker

Council workers set to strike across Scotland

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2425

Glasgow councils school Pupil Support Assistants on strike last year

Glasgow council's school Pupil Support Assistants on strike last year (Pic: Duncan Brown)

Some 80,000 public sector workers plan to strike across Scotland on Tuesday of next week. 

Unison union members in local government and Scottish government workers in the PCS union are set to coordinate their walkouts.

Dundee City Unison branch officer Arthur Nicoll spoke to Socialist Worker in a personal capacity.

He said, “Despite losing a day’s pay at a time of difficult financial circumstances our members understand why we’re right to strike.”

Unison is striking against a 1 percent pay increase imposed for two years by employers Cosla, the umbrella body for Scottish local government.

The union is demanding a £1 an hour increase instead.

“We know we have to make a stand over pay,” said Arthur. “Yet it’s not just a fight about that but a whole series of attacks on services and our livelihoods.”

Unison general secretary Dave Prentis called on the union’s members in Scotland to join the strike.

He urged those who need it to seek financial help from the union if striking puts them in hardship.

Prentis said workers “deserve better than what is effectively another pay cut”. 

A day earlier he suspended action in England and Wales for a proposal that is effectively a real terms pay cut.

Arthur argued, “We need to remember what inspired workers back in the 2011 pensions strikes—we were all out together. It’s great we are coordinating with PCS but we need more unions out.

“Let’s build on this and follow it up with serious, sustained and united action. 

“That’s how we can win.”

Appeal for Claire Lyall

Glasgow City Unison social work vice convenor Claire Lyall’s appeal hearing against her dismissal was set to take place on Monday of next week.

Claire’s union branch believes she was unfairly sacked after being dismissed in her absence. Both her doctor and a medical consultant had advised she was unfit to attend.

Send messages of support and details of how you can return petitions in support of Claire to [email protected]

Click here to subscribe to our daily morning email newsletter 'Breakfast in red'

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.