THOUSANDS of public sector staff in East Dunbartonshire will down tools today (Wednesday) to take part in one of the largest strikes ever to hit the UK.
East Dunbartonshire Council chiefs have warned that practically ALL council services will be affected by the industrial action – a response to proposed changes to public sector pension schemes.
All schools and nurseries were set to be closed for the day, although as the Herald went to press it was hoped that one nursery would remain open.
Meanwhile, all Leisure and Culture Trust services and buildings – including libraries and leisure centres – will be closed. The only council buildings remaining open will be Broomhill and The Triangle, which will provide emergency cover.
There will be no refuse or recycling collections and residents who usually have Wednesday uplifts will have to wait for a full week for services to return to normal.
The council’s chief executive, Gerry Cornes, said: “We have followed COSLA guidance and have worked closely with our trade union colleagues, agreeing a number of exempt posts to ensure that essential services and services to our most vulnerable customers, will still be delivered.
“Whilst most of our services will undoubtedly be affected during the day of strike action, we have prepared for this and put contingency plans in place in order to maintain critical services.
“I’d like to thank the public in advance for their patience and understanding.”
A few services will continue as normal – including pre-booked weddings and civil ceremonies, and pre-arranged court appearances on behalf of the council.
Services which will come to a halt, but will have staff on emergency standby include:
* Roads and neighbourhood services
* Property maintenance
* Health and safety
* Homelessness team
* Environmental health team
* Social work team
* Homecare services
Regular updates about how the strike is likely to affect residents will appear on the council’s website – www.eastdunbarton.gov.uk
North Lanarkshire Council is closing schools, community centres, libraries, offices and civic amenity sites. Special waste uplifts will also be hit.