by Tim Lezard GMB and UNISON are today holding a protest outside the Civic Centre of the County Borough of Merthyr where the Chief Executive wants to impose a pay cut of up to 3% on local government workers. The unions will lobby Labour councill …

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Merthyr Council

 

by Tim Lezard

GMB and UNISON are today holding a protest outside the Civic Centre of the County Borough of Merthyr where the Chief Executive wants to impose a pay cut of up to 3% on local government workers.

The unions will lobby Labour councillors to ask them to vote against this extreme and unconstitutional measure and will serve notice to the Labour Group that they will vigorously oppose any enforced reductions to terms and conditions of employment of its members and will seek legal challenge if necessary.

GMB regional officer Gareth Morgans said: “GMB and UNISON are shocked and disappointed at a report that is going to full council in Merthyr Tydfil in which the Chief Executive is asking for delegated powers to issue a Section 188 Notice of termination and re-engagement in order to impose a pay cut of up to 3% on local Government workers.

“This measure would take Merthyr County Borough Council away from the national Joint Council agreement and make Merthyr a stand-alone authority.

“The report suggests that if the unions do not agree to a 3 year pay cut then the cut imposed will be permanent. The trade unions see this as a gun to the heads of its members and cannot believe that a Labour controlled authority could stoop so low.

“Whilst recognising the council have a mammoth job in controlling the budgetary deficit imposed by this Tory/Lib Dem Coalition Government and passed on by the Welsh Government, we do not see cutting terms and conditions of loyal employees as being the answer to the problems.

“For a number of months, the trade unions have put forward numerous suggestions to address the budgetary restraints, most of which have been rebuffed for example, the council knowing full well that they would have a budgetary deficit refused to increase council tax to a level commensurate with a colleague authority, an authority that they have been asked to voluntarily merge with.

“The unions call for more meaningful dialogue to avoid this scenario of potentially locking out up to 1,700 workers unless they voluntarily agree to the changes. Dismissal and re-engagement are not the way to conduct employment relations and the powers that be in Merthyr should be ashamed for even considering this course of action.”

* The protest is at 2.30pm outside the Civic Centre, Castle Street, Merthyr Tydfil, CF47 8AN.

 

 


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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