Labour-affiliated unions keen to strike only in SNP-governed Scotland

The scene in Scotland this morning, above, contrasts with that in England, below.

Why is the rubbish only piling up in Scotland? Have the refuse workers in England been offered a deal better than the 5%, across the board, offered in Scotland?

At first sight, you might think so:

Councils in England, Wales and Northern Ireland have offered staff a pay increase of £1,925 from 1 April 2022, which they said equated to a 10.5% increase for the lowest paid workers, defined as those on up to £18,333 a year. There is also an offer of an extra day’s annual leave.

You see that ‘up to £18 333 a year?’ Well, Unison have looked at the details and see it differently:

Wirral Unison is arguing that due to rising inflation the pay offer is in fact a drop in income. It claims that those currently earning £18,333 will see a pay cut of £329 and those earning between £40,000 and £48,000 would see a pay cut between £3,000 and £4,000.

Despite this, in England, there is no talk of immediate strikes. All three unions, Unison, Unite and the GMB are apparently, still mulling it over with as view to putting it to their members.

Now, while it seems unlikely that these unions are too keen on striking to punish the Tories on behalf of Keir Starmer, things are different in Scotland as we saw last year:

Bin strikes during the COP26 climate summit will go ahead after part of a £48m offer was rejected by one union. The walk out by cleansing and refuse staff in Glasgow will begin at 00:01 on Monday. GMB Scotland said Glasgow City Council had failed to give members “proper time and space” to consider the offer.

More than two days earlier we read:

PLANS for binmen to strike in Glasgow during COP26 have been ditched after a last-minute pay rise offer from COSLA. 

The umbrella body – responsible for all councils in Scotland – made an eleventh-hour bid to break the strike deadlock today. 

Under the proposal, cleansing workers and teaching staff could benefit from a one-year 5.89% pay rise for the lowest-paid council employees as part of a £1062 rise for those earning below £25,000.

It remains subject to a two-week consultation, however, the bid has led union chiefs to suspend plans for potential strikes during the climate summit.

Drew Duffy, GMB organising and equality officer, said: “We have received a new offer from COSLA that will be subject to a two-week consultation of our members from Monday, November 1, during which we have agreed to suspend strike action.

The GMB leadership has decided to change their decision without consulting their members. Who has pressurised to them to do so, in order to damage COP26?

This man?

Nicola Sturgeon accused of 'not living in the real world' as Glasgow  cleansing row escalates - Daily Record
Image: Daily Record

This husband and wife? Karen Leonard, GMB Scotland Organiser?

Ade Cashley's tweet - "When @BBCGaryR and @GMB_union tell you that 4% offer  to Scottish NHS staff is political just pull out this photo. That's right Karen  Leonard of GMB is Richards

Union members must be getting sick of their leaders using them for political campaigning.


9 thoughts on “Labour-affiliated unions keen to strike only in SNP-governed Scotland

  1. Money. Labour members give to the unions, the unions give to Labour. The unions are anti SNP, they want Labour at the helm at Holyrood again, simple really. Jobs for the boys, money for nothing, pretendy socialists.

    I suggest that the SNP take Edinburgh council leaders to court for deliberately endangering public health.

    Mick Lynch is a staunch Brexiter, where did he spring from all of sudden anyway. Don’t trust the unions they are staunch unionists and certainly not good for Scotland’s democracy unfortunately.


    1. I agree, he campaigned against us on 2014 and though he supports the right g Scots having a vote, he has stated he will campaign against in 2023.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Our referendum will be our business and nothing to do with people who don’t live in Scotland and pay their taxes here.
        Will we see the massed ranks of Orange people and Labour peers crossing our borders again?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. The Scottish Government provided the means to offer workers a 5% rise several weeks ago – Labour controlled COSLA decided NOT to offer this – result strikes .
    Labour controlled councils bleat that the SG must do more to resolve this situation .
    Meanwhile the Labour Party Bin spokesman ( Sarwar ) is missing in action .

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Labour snakes, they have betrayed the Scots , once Labour was the party of home rule and the people , now the salthearts of the Union and big business. Like the Torys they offer nothing different just more of the same in UK,Ok utopia for the rich for the rest of us its hell.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes it does seem that the trade unions’ pay claim towards local government employers is being conducted very differently in Scotland compared to England, Wales and NI. There is no industrial action in this sector (yet) other than in Scotland. What follows is from the Unison website, referring to the employers’ offer for the rUK (with my emphasis) :

    ‘Discussions with the employers HAVE REACHED AN END, making this THE BEST OFFER THAT CAN BE ACHIEVED BY NEGOTIATIONS. So, UNISON is putting it to you, our members. We are consulting you on whether you wish to accept or reject this pay offer.’

    ‘The UNISON NJC Committee is NOT MAKING A RECOMMENDATION that members should vote ‘accept’ or ‘reject’ – it’s totally your choice. It is vital that you make your voice heard on this matter so that we have a full picture of every member’s view.
    The consultation is running until Monday 19 September.’

    ‘You should be aware that if there is a majority vote to reject the offer, THE NEXT STEP WOULD be an INDUSTRIAL ACTION BALLOT to attempt to force the employers to make an improved offer so think carefully about what you feel would be the best option for you – you can’t assume others will speak on your behalf, so add your voice to the conversation so your pay isn’t decided for you! 


    Seems like a reasonable, logical step-wise process. In contrast (it appears) to Scotland, negotiations elsewhere in the UK were conducted to a conclusion, albeit an unsatisfactory one from the unions’ perspective as not all demands have been met. There has been no industrial action during the period of negotiation. The deal offered by the employers is now being put to members and if rejected only then will there be a ballot on industrial action as a last resort, ‘action’ of as yet of an unspecified nature.

    Why has the relationship between COSLA and the same trade unions in Scotland resulted not just in some form of industrial action but in a strike whilst negotiations were (are) ongoing? What’s been the difference between here and the rUK? Insights anyone?


  5. The Labour Mafia in Scotland in with the Tories. The workers and union members should get informed and hold their representatives to book and be encouraged to get a good deal for themselves.

    Many trade unions give funding to the Labour Party while in cohoots with the Tories. Using workers monies to support Tory policies. Austerity, inflation, higher prices, higher interest rates. More wars etc. Supplying the weaponry illegally to fuel the fire of war. Putting up fuel and every prices by breaking International Agreements.

    The UK/US NATO supporting treats to other countries borders. Creating more illegal aggressive activities. Eternal war and corruption threatening other people. Killing and corruption to line their pockets with never ending conflicts.

    Johnston blaming other regimes for the failings of the Westminster Gov. Blaming other people for the failing Tories policies, Johnston blaming others for his lies, cheating and corruption. A history of lies, cheating and corruption to line his pockets with illegally obtained public monies. Starving and killing others.


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