Scottish Water workers are being balloted on industrial action after the employer imposed a below inflation pay rise which had not been agreed.
The imposition of a 3% rise over 15 months – worth 2.4% over a year – ended six years of partnership working between the company and staff.
"This pay cut is simply not acceptable when inflation is rising – recently reaching 5.2% - energy prices are rising by anything up to 30% and food by 11%," said branch secretary Steve Scott.
Members are being issued with ballot papers today asking them to vote for both strike action, and action short of a strike. Other unions are also balloting their Scottish Water members in a co-ordinated industrial action campaign.
Scottish Water claims it is only following the Scottish government’s target to limit public sector increases to 2%.
But, says Scottish organiser Dougie Black, the company "knows it has the money to pay a reasonable increase.
"It has an opportunity, while the ballot takes place, to convince the government to untie its hands," he added.
The ballot closes on 10 November.