EXCL Labour staff to hold ballot on whether they want to strike over pay

Posted On: 
12th June 2019

Labour staff are to vote on whether they want to take industrial action over a long-running pay dispute.

Labour staff have rejected the pay offer three times.
Credit: 
PA Images

A meeting organised by the Unite and GMB unions on Tuesday agreed to hold an "indicative ballot" on who would be prepared to go on strike.

That will then be followed by a full-blown ballot on industrial action, which could see party workers agree to stage a walk-out as they try to force bosses to improve their latest pay offer.

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One member of staff told PoliticsHome: "We said we wanted a pay rise that matches the Retail Price Index measure of inflation, but we are miles away from it.

"We are moving to an indicative ballot on who would want to strike, and after that we’ll move to an official strike ballot."

They added: "I’d imagine people will vote to have an actual strike ballot. People are p****d off."

Labour staff last month rejected a third and "final" pay offer by party management.

The decision, at an emergency meeting at Labour HQ, came despite the GMB and Unite both recommending that they accept the proposal. Some members of staff shouted "strike, strike, strike" as the meeting broke up.

Party bosses had offered every member of staff £800 each, plus a guarantee of five non-bank holiday days off over Christmas.

But for some workers, this would have meant a real-terms pay cut as it would be below the rate of inflation.

The party's initial pay offer was £600 per person, which was later increased to £750. Both were unanimously rejected by Labour staff.

Labour and the two trade unions have all been approached for comment.

Jennie Formby, Labour's general secretary, was later forced to apologise after appearing to blame the cost of the party's "extremely generous" maternity pay for the size of the pay offer.