Council plans union subsidy cut

The leader of Shropshire Council has said he will reduce an annual subsidy of almost £100,000 to the Unison trade union.

Keith Barrow said it was not right that money paid to Unison was used in political campaigns against the authority.

Unison recently balloted its members regarding strike action, after a 5.4% pay cut was imposed on council staff.

Alan James, from Unison, said the union was simply standing up for its members.

"The fact of the matter is the authority are deeply unhappy with Unison for doing what Unison is there to do - to stand up for its members' terms and conditions," Mr James said.

Mr Barrow said the Conservative-led council would reduce the subsidy to a level paid to other trade unions.

The funding currently covers the equivalent of two and a half Unison local branch salaries, as well as use of offices and a social club at Shire hall.

Over the last two years the council said Unison staff time was covered up to the value of £132,746.

That compares with £65,416 awarded to the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT), and significantly less for other unions.

Unison is by far the largest union represented on Shropshire Council, with 3,700 members.

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