Union sets Friday deadline for local government dispute

The
Transport and General Workers’ Union has warned that there is just one week
left to solve the local government pay dispute by negotiation.

Unions
and employers will meet again this Friday in a final attempt to reach a
negotiated settlement.

If
this fails, the union warns, there will be a series of national strikes,
selective action targeting council revenue raising, and thousands of low-paid
women workers demonstrating at this year’s TUC and Labour Party conferences.

T&G
national organiser Jack Dromey said: "Last Friday’s fiasco at Acas saw the
employers demonstrate the wisdom of Jade – but without her charm. It was not so
much Big Brother as big blunder. They promised progress and then failed to
table an offer. The eve-of-talks press statement offering a £5 an hour minimum
wage proved to be spin not substance. It was an offer we did not hear, let
alone refuse. They have simply made a bad situation worse.

"This
Friday is the last chance. If there is still no just settlement, then the
second national strike will go ahead on 14 August. That will be followed by selective
action with key groups of workers out indefinitely, targeting council revenue
raising. A third national strike will follow in September.

"Downing
Street should tell the employers to sort this mess out."

By Quentin Reade

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