Strike threat withdrawn in East Dunbartonshire Council and Leisure & Culture Trust

UNISON and UNITE trade unions have today (Monday) withdrawn planned strike action in East Dunbartonshire following crunch talks last week with East Dunbartonshire Council.

Strikes scheduled for Wednesday, September 12, have been called off and action short of strike has been suspended.

UNISON and UNITE will be consulting members up to Wednesday, October 3, on a fresh package reached after weeks of intensive negotiations.

Simon Macfarlane, UNISON regional organiser, said: “This is a tremendous position to be in given where we were last November when the council unilaterally took a decision to reduce our members’ pay and conditions. Spectacularly strong, colourful and vibrant strike action by the joint unions in June and solid action short of strike has led to a transformed landscape. Annual leave, overtime rates and unsocial hours payments have all been maintained and a much more realistic position has been offered on voluntary redundancy terms.

‘It is now up to our members to democratically decide whether they accept this offer. Our advice is that they do. UNISON members in East Dunbartonshire Council and Leisure & Culture Trust have achieved so much for themselves through growing confidence in collective action and realising that organising yourselves in your union gives you strength.”

Kenny Jordan, UNITE, said: “The residents of East Dunbartonshire shall be the ones most relieved to hear that last minute talks may have set out a chance for the ongoing dispute to be finally coming to an end with compromise reached through positive consultation and negotiation rather than hard-nosed imposition.”

Editor notes

  • East Dunbartonshire Council decisions of 9 November 2017 and 20 March 2018 proposed to cut employee terms and conditions as follows: 3 days annual leave; less pay for working late nights /early mornings; removal of enhanced overtime rates; drastic cuts to the voluntary redundancy payments framework.
  • All out strikes were held on 2, 22, 25 and 26 June 2018 and action short of strike in the form of work to rule and overtime ban was commenced thereafter.
  • On Friday, September 7, council officers tabled a revised proposal on the council’s Voluntary Redundancy Payment Framework. This offered up to 5 added years to pensions; 52 weeks redundancy and a 3 year payback period. These figures would be jointly reviewed through the council and trade union partnership arrangements in 2020. This came further to negotiations in July which had already maintained core terms and conditions which UNISON and Unite members have already voted to accept.

For further information please contact

Simon Macfarlane, UNISON regional organiser, on: 07703 194132