Cleaners working for Middlesbrough Council say councillors are planning to outsource their jobs simply to save money and are worried the move will see them earning lower wages and suffering cuts to their pensions in future.
The 140 workers – who are among the lowest paid at the local authority – have been told their jobs are to be transferred to a number of private companies next year to save the council in the region of £180,000.
UNISON Northern regional secretary Clare Williams said: “These outsourcing plans are morally indefensible and little more than a legal way to cut the wages of the council’s lowest paid employees in future.
“Privatising contracts in this way is a simply a false economy. The Council already has a poor track record of privatising contracts and has been forced in the past to bring them back in-house when things don’t work out.
“Instead UNISON would like to work with councillors to find a way of delivering a modern cleaning service based on new ways of working, which avoids the unnecessary outsourcing of these roles.”