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Library strike suspended

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A two-day strike over changes to library services in Southampton have been postponed as unions and employers attempt to broker a deal.

Southampton City Council librarians had been set to strike on Friday and Monday, but the industrial action was suspended at the final hour in order for talks to be able to take place.

Unison members have protested against the council’s strategy of not filling vacancies and using volunteers instead of trained librarians, but the city’s Conservative administration argues that the recent investment made in libraries meant a new way of working was a necessity.

Ongoing discussions have produced a draft agreement but Unison branch secretary Mike Tucker said further work was needed before it would be acceptable to members of staff and the matter is to be decided on Wednesday.

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