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T&G public services secretary Jack Dromey is to relinquish the key role of trade union side secretary in local gove...
T&G public services secretary Jack Dromey is to relinquish the key role of trade union side secretary in local government blue-collar pay bargaining on the National Joint Council.

In a letter to GMB general secretary John Edmonds, T&G general secretary Bill Morris says his union's finance and general purposes committee has decided to 'withdraw from the position of trade union side secretary for the NJC for local authorities' services' manual workers'.

The letter continues: 'In arriving at this decision, the committee regretted the difficulties that this matter, on which they had not been consulted, had caused.

'In consideration of this matter, the committee were anxious to avoid any repetition and expressed the wish to re-establish joint co-operation.'

The move surprised Unison's head of local government Keith Sonnet, who said his union had voted for Mr Dromey. Neither Mr Sonnet or his deputy, Virginia Branney, who chairs the trade union side of the council, had been informed of the move - even though Mr Morris's letter is dated 9 August.

Mr Dromey was elected secretary two and a half months ago, ending the GMB's traditional monopoly of the secretaryship. GMB public services secretary Mick Graham moved seats to become vice-chair.

Mr Sonnet said a replacement secretary would have to be elected by the whole council. The GMB holds 12 of the 30 seats on the trade union side of the manual workers' NJC, with Unison and the T&G each holding nine.

Mr Dromey was unavailable for comment as LGC went to press but, on his election in June, he said it was 'time to build unity amongst the local government unions'.

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