Westminster council workers face 600-mile relocation

Council workers are threatening to strike after being told they must relocate from central London to north Scotland or face redundancy.

Unison and the GMB unions have reacted angrily to news that up to 400 posts at a company employed by Westminster City Council are to be transferred to Dingwall, near Inverness.

They currently work for business process outsourcing firm Vertex in a call centre in Belgravia.

The council said business decisions were down to Vertex but that it was willing to talk to the unions.

Dave Johnson, national officer of Unison said: “This is pure economic greed at the expense of hundreds of jobs. It is simply not realistic to expect hundreds of staff to move and uproot their families to live in such a remote area.”

The GMB said it will challenge the legality of the original contract which outsourced the work from the council to the private company and was not ruling out industrial action in protest at the move.

A Westminster City Council spokesman said: “We are concerned about the situation, but how Vertex treat its staff, where it locates them and how it runs its business is a down to Vertex.”

Mike Berry

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