Socialist Worker

Workers at Glasgow council strike back

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2527

Janitors on strike in August

Janitors on strike in August (Pic: Duncan Brown)

Hundreds of workers employed by Glasgow City Council-run firms are taking action this week over conditions at the Labour council’s “arms-length” companies.

Janitors working for Cordia struck for five days from Monday. Unison union striker Steven told Socialist Worker that more janitors were actively involved in this week’s action than before.

“Some of the striking schools were a mess with no heating or hot water,” he said. “We’ll carry on until Cordia and the council stop dragging their heels.”

By the end of the week janitors will have struck 29 days this year. They are demanding payments for dirty and physically demanding work.


Community Safety Glasgow (CSG) workers struck last weekend in their long-running dispute over unequal pay arrangements.

They have now escalated their action to striking every weekend for the foreseeable future.

Some are calling for a two-week walkout over Christmas and New Year.

CSG workers in the Unison and GMB unions are fighting a change to shift payments.

The issue in both disputes is the lack of parity with other council employees.

Both fights are important for the entire council workforce as bosses look to drive down conditions across the board.

Both groups were set to protest at the city council chambers this week along with Information and Communication Technology (ICT) service workers, who are balloting to strike against privatisation.

The ICT staff are employed by the council’s joint venture with outsourcing giant Serco but soon face being farmed out to Canadian multinational CGI Group, whose tentacles in the Scottish public sector are growing.

The workers’ Unison union said the CGI deal “represents a clear threat to jobs, terms and conditions, pensions and services” and is encouraging its members to vote yes in the ballot.

Workers are set to lobby the council on Wednesday ahead of the executive committee meeting on Thursday to decide on entering into full contractual dialogue with CGI regarding privatisation.

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