Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, said that its highway members at Newham council would be balloted for strike action from Friday (20 March). The ballot closes on 3 April.
Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “The issue is that members have not been properly graded and, as a result, have not been properly paid. We estimate individuals have lost £8,000-a-year over a period of time.
“Negotiations with management have dragged on for months and now our members have lost patience with this foot-dragging local authority.”
The council has a record of industrial disputes – it is currently in dispute with educational staff over contracts and recently settled with council tax benefit staff over grading issues.
Onay Kasab added: “Newham has not got a good record recently when it comes to employment relations – the maintenance staff dispute being the latest in a long line.
“It is time that the council puts its house in order in this respect as the prospect of a strike by our highway members will mean potholes not being filled in and the roads not being maintained to high standards.”