5 Jul 2011

Shropshire Council sacks all staff and offers pay cut deal

Dismissal letters have been sent to around 6,500 people employed by Shropshire council, who have been told they will be immediately rehired if they accept a 5.4 per cent pay cut.

The letter says all Shropshire council staff will be dismissed at the end of September and rehired immediately, but they must agree to a 5.4 per cent cut in their pay.

The blanket dismissal comes after the Conservative-led council and the public sector union Unison failed to reach agreement over changes to workers’ pay and conditions.

The authority says it has to make savings of £76m due to reduced Government funding. It believes pay cuts would mean it would not have to make 400 permanent redundancies.

It is understood that Unison is balloting its members on strike action.

Move will ‘protect services’

The council maintains the development means that more services will be protected. In a statement, Jackie Kelly, head of organisational development at Shropshire Council, said: “On Thursday 23 June, a meeting of the full Council decided to make changes to staff terms and conditions, in order to avoid large scale redundancies and protect services to the public.

“Although we failed to agree the changes with the Trade Unions, with Unison in particular raising objections, we are keeping dialogue going and continuing to meet with them to see if there is still a possibility of getting a collective agreement before 30 September to implement the necessary changes.”