6 January 2010
UNISON calls for real talks as council serves
notice on 'Modernising Pay'
Instead of imposing, the council should be talking
and finding ways to stop staff becoming among lowest
paid in Scotland...
UNISON and other unions met Edinburgh Council officers
today to respond to letters sent out by the Council
issuing a statutory 90 day notice to find ways to
The meeting was called at short notice and the
unions deplored the Council's decision to send out
letters to staff before even meeting the unions.
The Council has intimated that, failing agreement,
it will impose 'Modernising Pay' by dismissing and
re-engaging over 17,000 staff.
At today's meeting, union officials repeated their
position that they were prepared to negotiate but
there needed to be movement on....
- removing conditions changes from
Job Evaluation. Many staff who though they were
not going to lose out now find that changes to shift
and other allowances mean they will be out of pocket.
Many of these workers are key staff who work nights
on emergency duties in 24 hour services (like care
- proper funding for 'Modernising Pay'. Edinburgh
has put less into the exercise than any other
council. Home helps have been treated worse than
anywhere else. Social Workers will become among
the lowest paid in Scotland. Office staff, mainly
women, look set to lose out. All this in the Capital
City where the cost of living is higher. Many
manual staff - men and women - will lose thousands.
UNISON wants an equal pay scheme and it agrees
with the council that this has to be put in place.
However, it does not agree with the Council using
this legal responsibility as an excuse to cut wages
and cut conditions.
A series of meetings has been arranged between
unions and the Council and reports will follow on
the website along with bulletins sent out to workplaces.
"If the Council is serious about using this
statutory notice to get an agreement, then the unions
will talk. Unfortunately, so far, the Council seems
more intent on imposing this on its workers than
negotiating with them", said John Stevenson,
UNISON Edinburgh Branch President.
November's branch magazine for more details.....