24 NOV 2020
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18 November 2020 - by Brian Hyland

Council staff will go on a full one-day strike next month after workers voted overwhelmingly for industrial action over merged pay and conditions.

The move comes after five years of negotiations following the merger of Newry and Mourne council and Down council failed to find a resolution.

Members of the four main s – represented by the Joint Trade Side (JTUS) - were balloted in the last three weeks on whether to proceed with industrial action.

The majority of members voted in favour.

reps met in Newry on Tuesday afternoon to discuss which course of action they were now taking.

After the meeting, JTUS secretary Kevin Kelly told the Newry Reporter that members will go on a full one-day strike in the first week of December.

This will be followed by further strike action throughout January.

“There will be one day of full strike action involving all members from all departments in the council in the first week of December and this will be followed by more days of action then in January, which will include full action short of strike action, i.e., work to rule, and so forth,” said Mr Kelly, who indicated there is still a short window of opportunity for council CEO Marie Ward to resolve the issue through the Labour Relations Agency (LRA).

‘Hugely disruptive’

s have warned of ‘hugely disruptive’ industrial action that will cause ‘serious inconvenience’ after receiving overwhelming support from last week’s counted ballot.

Members of NIPSA, Unite, Siptu and GMB were asked if they were in favour of both action short of strike action and for full strike action – with each recording an emphatic majority in favour.

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