Quarriers staff vote to accept pay freeze

Agreement reached after four months of negotiations with Unison

Staff at social care charity Quarriers, which operates mainly in Scotland, will not receive a cost-of-living pay increase this year following an agreement on changes to terms and conditions.

The deal was agreed in a staff ballot after four months of negotiations with trade union Unison. The charity's 2,000 employees will also lose half of their entitlement to public holidays, and extra pay for night work will be phased out.

Unison's negotiating committee put the deal to staff but did not recommend they accepted it.

Quarriers branch secretary Stephen Brown said: "Quarriers didn't get everything they wanted but they did get a lot of concessions. Staff voted for the agreement probably more out of fear for their jobs than anything else."

Negotiations began in July after Unison accused Quarriers of "gunboat diplomacy" over its threat to dismiss all 2,000 of its staff and hire them back on re-negotiated contracts.

Phil Robinson, chief executive of Quarriers, said: "These are difficult times for the social care sector across the UK and Quarriers is not immune to the challenges social care charities are facing.

"We need to reduce costs in order to continue to provide the current level of service to some of the most vulnerable people in Scotland and across the UK".



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