Unison calls for new Afan Lido staff to be employed directly by Neath Port Talbot Council
UNION chiefs are calling for staff at Port Talbot's new Afan Lido to be directly employed by the council.
Neath Port Talbot Council's leisure and sports centres are managed by Celtic Community Leisure, which also employs the staff.
But Unison does not want the same to apply when the replacement Afan Lido opens in late 2014 or early 2015.
Cabinet members will this week rule on the recommendations of a task and finish group of councillors set up to consider options for the rebuild.
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It calls for the new Lido to be built in Hollywood Park and not the original site, as campaigners had wanted.
At the same time, it recommends eight lanes — which the campaigners called for — rather than the smaller version the council had proposed.
Unison's Neath Port Talbot branch chairman Mark Fisher said: "Following discussions with representatives of the Save The Afan Lido group, we have decided to support the building of this leisure complex.
"We are also asking for the new staff to be centrally employed by the authority.
"We are a public services union and the staff who will be working at this new state-of-the-art complex should be employed in-house, not by a private company.
"We are looking to campaign with the Afan Lido group to keep these services public not private. We are encouraging all the community to back our campaign."
Chief executive Steve Phillips said the authority would not be able to support the union's request.
"The council is committed to its existing arrangements with Celtic Leisure for the operation of leisure facilities," said Mr Phillips.
"The Afan Lido is part of that arrangement."
Cabinet members are due to consider the recommendations tomorrow.