Economy, The Regions

– Shropshire Council gives whole staff employment ultimatum

Shropshire Council to dismiss all staff in pay cut

Shropshire Council’s 6500 staff have received a letter of dismissal from their employers expressing that unless they adhere to a 5.4% pay cut they will be sacked on 30th September, with no right to compensation. Should staff accept the terms, they will be reinstated in their positions on 1st October. According to Shropshire Council, the ultimatum was issued in an effort to prevent 400 permanent redundancies and save £76million. Jackie Kelly, Head of Organisational Development at the Council said:

“Whilst we appreciate [that] the formal nature of this process may lead to some anxiety, we intend to continue offering reassurance, guidance and support to all our staff over the coming days, weeks and months.”

The Council had been in discussions with staff and trade unions regarding a change to the current terms and conditions within their contracts. However, Ms. Kelly confirmed that an agreement could not be reached to the make the proposed budget-saving changes:

40% of Council staff are members of Unison, and yesterday, Alan James spokesman for the trade union said:

“They are basically saying accept the pay cut or you will lose your job.

“We are advising our members to write into the authority refusing the new contracts and do nothing with the proposals which have arrived through the letter box. We have some time on this and I think the authority has gone about this the wrong way. People are scared and intimidated by the tone of the letter and the way it’s been delivered by the authority.”

One anxious Council employee commented that all faith was being lost in public sector employment and a culture of constructive dismissal is beginning to emerge:

The Treasury’s Comprehensive Spending Review, published in November 2010 had estimated that 490, 000 public sector jobs would have to be axed to help balance the UK budget. Unison and the PCS are due to ballot members on further strike action this year.

Kuki Taylor
Research and Communications Officer

Website: BBC,
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