Thursday, 18 August 2011
Dave Prentis, General Secretary of UNISON, today called on Plymouth City Council to drop the macho politics and get back round the table. The call comes following the councils decision to withdraw recognition from the union, close its office and refuse further talks, in the wake of a disagreement over discriminatory cuts to council workers pay and conditions.
Dave Prentis, said:
"Plymouth City Council should drop the macho politics and get back round the negotiating table, for the good of their workforce and the people of Plymouth. Derecognising the union is an aggressive and disproportionate response to UNISON's honest efforts to protect our members jobs, pay and conditions and protect vital services for local people.
"We are taking legal advice, and we will not be pressured into signing an agreement that discriminates against some groups of staff.
"We have support from Unite and GMB who have both written to the council to withdraw their signatures from the agreement. There is only one way back now, and that is for the council to talk to the union and come to a fair and reasonable agreement."
The local UNISON branch has been overwhelmed with messages of support from around the UK and across the globe. There has been numerous messages from people in Plymouth, many of whom are not even union members but believe firmly that UNISON is doing the right thing.
The unions have been in talks for months over the Council's decision to cut jobs and the pay and conditions of its staff. The union has been given legal advice that the proposed agreement may have a disproportionate impact on certain groups of low paid workers, making it discriminatory. The cuts will particularly hit those providing home care, emergency social services, street cleaners and parks workers.