Falkirk Council workers still waiting for equal pay

The fight for equal pay compensation is entering its second decade
The fight for equal pay compensation is entering its second decade

Hundreds of council workers will reach an unwanted milestone next month - 10 years fighting for equal pay.

Unions and lawyers have now been campaigning for nearly a decade to win a better wage deal for low paid employees of Falkirk Council.

Talks to enforce Single Status job evaluation for local government were negotiated in 1999, aimed at establishing whether jobs were of equal value and bring agreement on pay that would remove the need for equal pay claims being made to an industrial tribunal.

But is has still led to thousands of claims being brought by employees looking to be compensated for years of pay disparity.

One firm of solicitors is representing 242 Falkirk Council claimants.

Carol Fox of Fox and Partners in Edinburgh, said; ““The first equal pay cases were lodged back in 2005 so we are nearing a decade of litigation. It is in the best interests of all parties, and most especially our claimants, for settlement to be agreed. We hope Falkirk Council will do the right thing and bring these cases to an end by way of settlement before the end of the year.”

Falkirk Council has already settled hundreds of claims at a reported cost of “millions” of pounds.

A spokesman said: “We are still progressing with negotiations with the employees representatives and these cases can be very complex so it takes time.”

A spokesman for the GMB union said: “We have successfully made claims against all 32 local authorities in Scotland but there is slow movement towards settlement of the majority.

“It could be years before this exercise is concluded and all our members have received the compensation to which they are entitled.”