KIRKLEES Council’s property workers are a step closer to striking after a preliminary vote yesterday.
Union members in the council’s Design and Property Services are angry after millions of pounds worth of work was given to private companies.
A ballot yesterday saw Unison members vote in favour of taking industrial action.
Unison organiser, Mick Ryan, said they would be meeting with council officials next week in a bid to avert the strike.
He said: “We will see what the council comes up with next Thursday but we want to stop the outsourcing of this work completely.”
If talks are unsuccessful another ballot on definitive strike action could be taken.
It is thought up to 80 jobs are at threat in the service, which employs architects, building surveyors, structural engineers, landscape architects and electrical engineers at Kirkgate Buildings on Byram Street.
The 186 staff design council buildings including schools, offices and libraries.
Some £2.1m of contracts – about a third of the service’s annual workload – has been given to private sector companies in the past four months.
Among the jobs to be contracted out is the £700,000 design of the new £7m Headfield Primary School in Dewsbury, £400,000 for the design of Dewsbury Crematorium and £400,000 each for the design of new libraries in Heckmondwike and Ravensthorpe.