Victory for women workers as council agrees to equal pay proposals

Alasdair Clark

Glasgow City Council agreed not to pursue a legal challenge after a decade-long equal pay dispute

AN EMERGENCY MEETING of the Glasgow City council’s administration committee unanimously agreed to settle the pay dispute and not challenge a legal ruling which said pay structures created in 2006 were discriminatory.

Around 6000 predominantly low-paid women workers are thought to be affected by the decision, which could cost up to £500m to resolve.

SNP council leader Susan Aitken, whose manifesto included a commitment to settle the dispute, said: “We need to send a strong message to our lower paid female employees that we value the crucial work that you do, and we believe you should be paid equally for it compared to others doing similar work.

READ MORE: Glasgow City Council’s female staff members demand equal pay dispute is resolved

“This council under the previous Labour administration was involved in litigation for over a decade.

“The new City Government has today led on drawing a line under that. Instead, we will seek a resolution through on-going negotiation.”

Labour’s group leader Frank McAveety said Glasgow Labour had always been committed to settling the dispute.

Unions representing the workers welcomed the decision to pursue “negotiation over litigation.”

GMB Scotland organiser Hazel Nolan said: “This was an opportunity for the council to do the right thing by thousands of low-paid women.

“Susan Aitken has committed her administration to resolving this discrimination and now we can begin negotiations.

“This is only the start of the process, but the decision clears the way and perhaps for the first time our women can be optimistic.”

Negotiations over final settlements will now begin between unions and council bosses.  

Picture courtesy of Glasgow City Council 

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