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Cheshire West and Chester Council staff vote to strike

Staff at Cheshire West and Chester Council have voted to strike over changes to their terms and conditions.

Unison said the council planned to reduce overtime pay and cut allowances for weekend and shift working.

The union said its members, and those in Unite and GMB, will walk out after they voted in favour of action.

Workers will stage a three-hour stoppage on Tuesday from 15:00 GMT to coincide with a protest held outside the council headquarters in Chester.

Overtime ban

Cheshire West and Chester Council was formed in April 2009 from a merger of Ellesmere Port and Neston, Vale Royal and Chester District councils, along with part of Cheshire County Council.

The council said the changes to terms and conditions were intended to "equalise" ones which "which vary greatly" between employees of the four old authorities.

Ray McHale, Unison Assistant Branch Secretary, said the stoppage was "just the beginning".

He said: "This dispute is of the council's making. The council had the chance to avoid this by negotiating with us, but they decided to throw out all our proposals.

"The council is not interested in talking and now we have no option but to begin a campaign of industrial action."

He said after Tuesday's strike staff would stage selective strikes at weekends.

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