Page last updated at 17:35 GMT, Thursday, 25 September 2008 18:35 UK

Council workers to strike again

Unemptied wheelie bin
Council services were disrupted during an earlier strike

Unions have set a date for fresh strike action by council workers in a continuing dispute over pay.

Unison, which represents 100,000 local government workers in Scotland, said the latest action would begin on Monday, 6 October.

The announcement came a day after a 24-hour walkout by 150,000 local government staff.

Unions are unhappy with a 2.5% pay offer and want 5% instead. Council bosses called for more talks.

A Unison spokesman said the forthcoming action would target particular services and would involve lower numbers of workers than previous strikes. He declined to give any indication how long it would last.

'Reality' check

However council bosses claim they have already made concessions and the resources are not available to meet the workers' demands.

Local authority employers' group Cosla called on the unions to bring more realistic demands to the table.

A Cosla spokesman said: "We are prepared to meet with the unions at any time.

"We do not want the people of Scotland inconvenienced by unnecessary strike action."

He urged the unions to come to any meeting with "a degree of reality in their position".

"We have moved twice already firstly to get to 2.5 % (from 2.2%) and then a one-year deal from three. The unions have not moved an inch."

Unison Scottish secretary Matt Smith said strike action was "only taken with the greatest of reluctance" and said he hoped the union and Cosla could come to a "negotiated settlement".

Pupils 'at risk' during walk-out
22 Sep 08 |  Tayside and Central
Union in 'cost of living' protest
22 Sep 08 |  Scotland politics
Council strike sparks disruption
20 Aug 08 |  Scotland

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