A UNION is promising action on behalf of lowly paid council workers.

Unison’s pledge comes after the local authority employers’ body offered a one per cent pay rise to about a million council workers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland – and a slightly higher rise to 50,000 on the lowest salaries.

The offer follows a similar one per cent rise last year, which came after a three-year wage freeze. If agreed, it would cost 350 councils a total of £164m.

Unison says it will organise activity across the region to highlight the “poverty pay” of local government workers.

It wants a £1.20-an-hour pay rise, to bring the bottom pay rate up to the Living Wage rate, £7.65 outside London.

Unison’s regional convenor, Clare Williams, said: “Local government workers do vital jobs, keeping our streets safe, educating our children and caring for the young, the elderly and the vulnerable.

“But the relentless attack on pay has forced many of them to rely on food banks, pay day loans and in-work benefits.”

Previously, Unison said it would consult its members on industrial action.

The councils’ body says its offer represents a fair deal.