Aberdeen schools close as staff strike over equal pay

Almost half of Aberdeen’s schools will be closed today as catering and cleaning staff start a 48-hour strike as part of a dispute over equal pay.

At least 34 of the city’s 77 schools are expected to be closed, with 45 already planning to shut their doors to pupils tomorrow.

Catering and cleaning staff are owed backdated pay under the government’s single-status agreement and also want access to bonus schemes.

More than 600 members of the Transport and General Workers’ Union are expected to take part in the 48-hour strike.

The council says its offer is the most generous of any of Scotland’s 32 local authorities. An offer to pay 2,000 staff a total of £13.5m within less than six weeks was rejected by members at a mass meeting on Tuesday, prompting today’s disruption.

Peter Leonard, who is driving the council’s contingency plans, said a rapid-response unit made up of non-striking staff would be on hand to respond to emergencies in a bid to keep as many schools open as possible.

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