Waste workers in 15 councils are to strike over what a union described as a "pitiful" pay offer.

The union Unite has has confirmed that members across all waste services in 15 councils are to walk-out in response to a two percent local government pay offer.

The days of strike action will begin on August 24 and 31.

It is estimated that around 1,500 Unite members across 15 councils will join their colleagues in City of Edinburgh Cleansing and participate in the second wave of strike action. Unite will be the only union involved in this phase of council strike action.

Three unions, the GMB, Unite and public services union Unison say they have received a mandate for strike action in a local government pay dispute over a dispute over a 2% pay offer to Scottish council workers. which could shut schools and leave bins unemptied.

The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) - which acts as an employers' association -   has been warned by the unions Unison, GMB and Unite that it has a mandate to disrupt schools in 16 of Scotland 32 local authorities. They said they had a further sanction to disrupt waste and recycling services across 25 local authorities.

Unions had said the strikes could take place as early as mid to late August after pupils return from the summer break.

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The second wave of strike dates to hit all waste services in councils forms the next phase of  what Unite said was a "co-ordinated campaign" to persuade the Scottish Government and to make a decent pay offer.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite’s members play a crucial role in keeping Scotland’s bins emptied and streets clean and they have had enough of the procrastination between COSLA and the Scottish Government that has led us to where we are now. Our members across all councils will receive the union’s complete support until this dispute is resolved and a fair pay offer secured. Unite will always defends the jobs, pay and conditions of its members."

The unions have warned COSLA that the only way to avoid strikes is if there is a substantially improved pay offer while inflation has risen to 9.4%.

Unite regional officer Wendy Dunsmore said: “Council workers have had enough of sub-standard settlements and deserve a decent wage to sustain their families given the inflation predictions and soaring food and energy prices.

"The failure of both COSLA and the Scottish Government to work to bring an improved offer to the table that could have halted this action means any blame for where we are now should be directed back to them. Unite will not tolerate that local government workers are the consistent poor relations and members have now had enough. We are calling once again on COSLA to make a fair and decent offer to workers now in order to avoid the forthcoming wave of strikes.”

The union said there has been no indication as to how the additional £140 million funding for councils recently announced by John Swinney will be used.

And it said that while it is their understanding that the funds are for local government workers that would include teachers, they are calling on COSLA to make a fair and decent offer to workers now in order to avoid the forthcoming strikes.

It is reported that more than half of Scotland’s 250,000 council workers are earning less than £25,000 a year for a 37-hour week. Unite previously warned all new council leaders if they do not act to improve pay, they will see strikes this summer.

Councils involved in the second phase of strikes  are: Aberdeen City, Angus, Clackmannanshire, Dundee, East Ayrshire, East Lothian, East Renfrewshire, Falkirk, Glasgow, Highland, Inverclyde, South Ayrshire, South Lanarkshire and West Lothian.

A COSLA spokesman said:  “We held constructive discussions with Scottish Government last week.  Leaders met virtually on Friday and at this meeting agreed that they needed further information.

“Given the importance of a pay award for our workforce, council leaders wanted to seek further clarification from both the Scottish Government and the UK Government and will reconvene this week to further consider this matter.”