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Home Industry News Defra vets in industrial action

Defra vets in industrial action

21st January 2008

Hundreds of veterinary staff at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) are to take industrial action over pay.

According to the union Prospect, more than 700 of the government’s vets, specialists and scientists are to take action through a work-to-rule, which will mean staff boycott voluntary activities and only work to the letter of their contracts.

The staff have chosen to take action following the 2007 pay award which refused an increase for the department’s most experienced staff.

Prospect national secretary Geraldine O’Connell said below-inflation pay rises are affecting staff’s motivation.

“This action is not just about the imposed offer but to ensure that specialist pay remains at the forefront of ministers’ minds during talks over the pay remit for 2008,” she commented, adding that members face the same rising living costs as other workers.

In related news, this weekend Defra announced it had found a fifth mute swan which tested positive for highly pathogenic H5N1 Avian Influenza.

However, it stated there is no evidence suggesting widespread disease among the bird population.

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