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Threat of strike by police staff is averted after talks

A POTENTIAL Police Scotland strike has been averted after the force offered additional leave and job security to disgruntled staff.

Unison Scotland was preparing to ballot police staff for industrial action yesterday, up to and including a strike, amid concerns over control room closures, changes to terms and conditions and restricted leave during the Commonwealth Games.

But the ballot has been cancelled following a last minute negotiated settlement which includes guarantees around job relocation and job security, one year protection of allowances including basic pay, and an extra day of leave for staff impacted by the Glasgow Games.

Gerry Crawley, Unison regional officer, said: "Unison is pleased that we will recommence negotiations with Police Scotland and we have agreed to cancel our consultative ballot which had been due to start today.

"Unison members now have some protection and guarantees around job relocation and job security which is hugely important. We also have an agreement to protect basic pay and allowances.

"And Unison members whose leave is being restricted over the Commonwealth Games in the summer will receive an additional ones day's annual leave.

"We still have a lot to do over the coming months. Unison members are resolute in their determination to protect as many local jobs and local services as we can. Unison will continue to work hard to support our members through what will be very difficult times ahead."

A Scottish Government spokesman said: "We welcome the fact that Police Scotland, SPA and the unions have worked together to resolve issues which has resulted in the cancellation of the consultative ballot."

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