Industrial action planned for today (Wednesday) in libraries, entertainment venues, parks and leisure centres across Blaenau Gwent has been suspended.
UNISON says a vote of 88 per cent in favour of striking by receptionists, caterers, lifeguards, librarians and others at Aneurin Leisure Trust forced the employer to concede a much more favourable pay offer. Sister unions GMB and Unite have similarly suspended strike action.
Rosie Lewis, UNISON regional organiser said,
“Workers at Aneurin Leisure haven’t had a pay rise for more than two years. They were fed up with low wages and they decided to take a stand and do something about it.
“The pressure of their overwhelming vote for strike action forced the employer to concede a much-improved pay offer which will now be considered by staff.
“The employees’ inspiring stand of solidarity shows when you stick together with your workmates you can make things happen. You are not powerless.
“We’ll be recommending acceptance of the improved pay offer and we look forward to a more positive working spirit with the employer in future.”
Notes for editors
- Staff have not had a cost of living pay rise since April 2016 and some staff have been forced to use foodbanks
- The trade unions commenced negotiations with Aneurin Leisure Trust for a cost of living pay rise for all staff in January. This year, instead of an increase from the April anniversary, the Trust offered to boost pay by just one per cent for the period between October 2018 and April 2019 rather than a full twelve months. This is equivalent to 0.5 per cent over twelve months and was rejected by UNISON members by more than 90 per cent in a ballot
- A UNISON ballot for industrial action resulted in an 88.1 per cent vote in favour on a turnout of 69 per cent
- A further offer of 1.5% for twelve months was rejected by UNISON in negotiations
- The improved offer below, was conceded by Aneurin Leisure at conciliation talks at ACAS yesterday: –
- 5 per cent backdated to 1 April 2018 up to 30 September 2018
- Rising to 2% from 1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019
- UNISON strike action has been suspended to allow a consultative ballot of its members on the new pay offer. This ballot will close on 15 November 2018
- A 24 hour stoppage was to take place on Wednesday 7 November
Alastair Gittins, UNISON Press Officer on 07816 53 83 97