‘Pay up now’ say furious unions

Angry union bosses have demanded that North Lanarkshire Council (NLC) “stop stalling” and “pay up now” on equal pay claims.

UNISON held a demonstration on Monday (June 23) at the Queen’s Baton Relay to urge the council to settle over 1,200 equal pay cases raised by workers who claim they have been unfairly treated.

John Mooney, UNISON Branch Secretary, said: “NLC cannot continue to dodge the issue of equal pay. We have been clear all along that the Employment Tribunal claims we have lodged will prove to be successful. We call on NLC to do the right thing and settle all cases now. For an employer to purposely change job scores which lowered pay rates and to admit that they have destroyed the paperwork is astonishing and UNISON demand to know who sanctioned such disgusting behaviour.”

But council chiefs hit back, saying around 6,000 cases had already been settled for a total of £38million.

Councillor Jim Smith, depute leader of North Lanarkshire Council, said: “To suggest that this council is somehow dragging its heels over equal pay is nonsense, given that we have paid out more than £38 million to thousands of people to this point.

“We will continue to deal with this issue responsibly. We have a proud history of paying claims where they are justified and I am sure that will continue to be the case.

“This is a complicated area of the law, and I understand people’s frustration. But the kind of mischief-making that is going on just now helps nobody.”