Council strike likely in Birmingham as city plans salary cuts for 5,000 in bid to equalise pay

Council workers in Birmingham have threatened strike action over plans to impose pay cuts on 5,000 employees to solve an equal pay crisis.

Trade union Unison said it received 100% support from its members for a ballot on industrial action over the pay cuts.

Birmingham City Council this week rubber-stamped plans to impose a new pay structure on all staff to make ensure it complies with equal pay laws.

Although four in 10 workers will be better off under the new deal, around 12% of the council’s 41,000 employees will take a wage cut.

Steve Foster, chairman of the joint trade union committee dealing with the issue, told the Birmingham Post: “We had a meeting the other day attended by workers from all over the council where many people stood up and said they were going to lose their houses and be made bankrupt as a result of what is being proposed.

“The council is looking to impose this rather than seeking agreement and the unions will respond in an appropriate fashion. When the letters detailing the new grades hit the mats, we will be looking for industrial action.”

The council insisted it had agreed an appeal system with the unions and was dealing fairly with the need to provide fairer pay.

Birmingham City Council last month issued 40,000 redundancy notices to staff to enable it to put them on the new pay structure.

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