For commuters hit by already high parking costs, excessive fuel prices and steep increases in virtually all walks of life, some may be happy to hear traffic wardens are planning seven-day action at the end of next week.
The strike action in Wiltshire means penalty charge notices will not be issued and charges in council car parks will not be enforced.
The walkout is expected to cost the council £30,000 in lost parking revenue.
The action, which has been led by GMB, comes after two days of strikes in the county in May failed to drive any meaningful solution after the council tried to enforce a pay cut of 10 per cent, or £2,000 a year, for traffic wardens in the area.
Wiltshire Council is seeking to save £800,000 annually by ending contractual unsocial hours payments for almost 350 staff, including social workers and care workers.
Keith Roberts, GMB regional organiser, said: ‘In the middle of a cost of living crisis, our members have the terrible threat hanging over their heads of a huge pay cut.
‘This is impacting their well-being and several are off sick with stress. The council needs to start acting like grown-ups and take the proposed pay cuts off the table.
‘To make matters worse, the council has refused to take fire and rehire off the table. This is the disgraceful practice, of sacking your own workforce to force through contractual changes.’
‘This is a red rag to a bull for our members, who will not voluntarily accept a pay cut and are disgusted that the council refuses to rule out the rogue option of fire and rehire, which is usually the last resort of only the most unscrupulous employers.
‘Wiltshire Council needs to understand that this seven-day strike will be a major escalation from GMB, and we will ensure that it hits them hard in the pocket, costing them up to £200,000 in lost income.’
The council’s chief executive, Terence Herbert, said: ‘We have been working with ACAS to find a date that suits the council, GMB and ACAS, and we are committed to holding these talks at a time when all parties can attend.’