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Thursday 03 December 2020

FDA consults COPFS members on possible strike action

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The FDA has launched an indicative ballot of members working in the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service on possible industrial action over pay.

The FDA has long campaigned for a fair pay settlement for our members in COPFS, who are paid substantially less than their counterparts in equivalent roles in Scottish Government.

In comments reported by STV and across the Scottish media, FDA National Officer for Scotland, Allan Sampson said: “COPFS staff have played a pivotal role in keeping our justice system moving throughout the pandemic, and they will be essential in dealing with the backlog of cases in the period ahead. All they ask is to be paid the same as colleagues doing comparative jobs in the Scottish Government, and for their pay to reflect the value of the work they do.”

Speaking to the Herald, Sampson argued that “we’ve been telling Scottish ministers about this issue over pay parity for years. There’s been some sympathetic words, but nothing has been done to address it.”

Highlighting that the FDA has been working constructively with colleagues in the COPFS over the last eighteen months, he points out that the union has made a solid case for sufficient funds to be made available by ministers to provide pay parity between COPFS and the rest of Scottish Government. 

“Sadly, to date, the necessary additional budget has not been forthcoming and ministers have failed to engage on this issue in any meaningful or productive way. It is for that reason that the FDA has taken the very difficult decision to consult with our members on potential industrial action.”

The ballot opened on 1 December and will determine the union’s next steps, but the FDA remains willing to engage and continue dialogue with both COPFS colleagues and Scottish Ministers throughout this period.

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