Blog: Investing in you is investing in our schools and in our pupils

Join us this evening for an online rally, as we build for action on pay in Scottish schools

Christina McAnea, arms folded, in front of conference stage - 'Fighting for our future'

Our streets, villages, towns and cities only thrive when unsung heroes roll up their sleeves to keep our public services going. In every neighbourhood, it’s local government workers who everyone relies on.

And every day, UNISON campaigns to improve their pay and recognition for their essential work.

From maintaining roads to ensuring public safety, their roles are indispensable. But workers find themselves grappling with inadequate pay and shrinking budgets in their workplaces. Pay fails to reflect the value of their work, and local council funding fails to keep up with the need in our communities.

UNISON Scotland has been taking action. On behalf of all local government workers in Scotland, waste workers took strike action last week. And now we’re asking school staff to vote for a second wave of walkouts.

So if you’re one of our members working in a school in Scotland, you have just one week left to vote for strike action. The dispute over pay is at a critical point, as COSLA hasn’t come back with an improved offer since April.

We must demand that you are valued and paid fairly. Investing in you, is also an investment in the future of our schools and all pupils.

UNISON wants a fair deal for all Scottish local government workers. A 12% pay increase, or £4,000 – whichever is greater for each worker – was our claim. But COSLA’s 5% offer goes nowhere near that and was rightly rejected by our members.

Tonight, we’ll be rallying online at 6pm. Join us via YouTube, and encourage your colleagues to join too. You’ll hear from myself and your local government reps, encouraging you all to find that purple envelope that came through the post, cast your ‘yes’ vote and post it back.

You’re the backbone of society, keeping services going despite all you face. This is your chance to stand up for yourselves the way you stand up for your communities every day in your jobs.

UNISON will be with you, supporting you throughout this battle and beyond. By voting for strike action, you can be a beacon of hope for all workers – hope that we are one step closer to rewriting the story of local government into one of fair pay, respect and recognition.