COUNCILS in the region are paying out more than £1 million a year to staff who work full time on trade union business, The Northern Echo can reveal.

Unions chiefs and council bosses have defended the roles, saying staff have the right to union representation – and it is more effective and convenient to have permanent union reps based in town halls.

But critics have questioned why cash-strapped councils are funding union reps when vital services are being axed.

Reported by the Northern Echo. You can read the full story here. 

I am a journalist and author. I am a staff writer at the UK edition of WIRED magazine and in 2015 my book, Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. I created FOI Directory in 2012.