Wiltshire Council must ditch plans to slash keyworker pay by 20 per cent

16 Mar 2022
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GMB Union has warned Wiltshire Council it must ditch plans to slash key worker pay by 20 per cent or face industrial action. 

Under the local authority’s plans staff in highways and leisure centres, care workers, social workers and traffic wardens face a pay cut of between 10 and 20 per cent. 

Social workers would lose around £7,000 per year, and traffic wardens would lose about £2,000 per year. 

In total, 97 per cent of GMB members voted to reject the cuts – the ballot also showed they would support industrial action if required. 

Wiltshire Council has failed to properly consult staff and unions over the proposed changes to terms and conditions. GMB has proposed face to face talks through ACAS to seek a resolution and avoid escalation, but the council has refused. 

GMB has today written to elected councillors asking them to intervene with the council to avoid the possibility of industrial action. 

Keith Roberts, GMB Regional Organiser, said:  

"GMB has proposed talks to resolve differences with the council, but they have point blank refused to talk to us.  

“A confrontation is not in the interests of the council, staff, or residents - but if that is the path they want to push us down, we will reluctantly have to take it.  

“GMB members are incensed. For social workers the council’s proposal would have led to a 20 per cent reduction in pay, a loss of £7.000 per year. 

“Traffic wardens and specialist care staff face a10 per cent cut.  

“The council has paused these cuts but not taken them off the table.  

“The uncertainty caused by this has caused a crisis of confidence in staff and many staff have already left or are looking for other jobs.   

"Our members are furious that the chief executive sent out an email to all staff saying there was no cut in salaries, and that GMB has been blocked from meeting staff to explain the true facts 

"GMB is now talking to our members about what our next steps are – up to and including strike action.” 

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