Page last updated at 23:27 GMT, Tuesday, 7 October 2008 00:27 UK

Council forced to drop pay deal

The council has been forced to withdraw its pay offer to staff

A pay offer to thousands of council staff in south west Scotland has been withdrawn due to fears it could prompt a flood of compensation claims.

Dumfries and Galloway Council has confirmed it has been forced to drop its "single status" package.

The deal was intended to address historic pay inequalities.

However, an Appeal Court judgement has prompted the local authority to abandon that plan and seek fresh talks with the unions.

It is the latest setback in long-running attempts to agree the "single status" deal.

Seeking solutions

It had been hoped unions could be balloted on the offer later this year.

Under the terms of the deal most staff would have seen their wages increase, but a significant minority would have seen their pay cut.

It was proposed that their wages would be guaranteed for a period of three years before being reduced.

However, the Appeal Court ruling meant that course of action could risk provoking compensation claims.

"Any deal that leaves the council still exposed to claims under equal pay legislation cannot be supported," a council statement said.

"The aim now is to seek a solution, together with the unions, as soon as possible."

Back-pay offer for council staff
22 Apr 08 |  South of Scotland
Staff 'unhappy' over pay proposal
03 Apr 07 |  South of Scotland
Council close to equal pay deal
23 Jan 07 |  South of Scotland

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