For the last two months, the Labour Party and Cllr Jim Bollan have claimed that they could get hundreds of employees a payment under equal pay; knowingly misleading these employees, many of whom are female workers on low grades.

Labour should have resolved this issue during their five year term of administration as the legal claim period ran from March 31, 2012 to March 31, 2017. Instead they chose not to help or even contact their staff.

Instead, knowing that there was nothing that could be done as the legal claim period was closed, they teamed up with the Community Party to exploit the emotions of these workers for the sake of a newspaper story.

The SNP administration explored every possibility that could allow time-barred payments to be made, including "wellbeing" payments. We did not solely rely upon advice from the council's own legal officers, but looked at external legal advice from Counsel with specific expertise in this area. The advice was clear. To make any payments after the legal time bar had passed would be illegal.

Advice was also sought from Trade Unions at a National Level. Their concern was equally clear. If the council made these illegal payments, we would be cutting across our legal and binding agreements, leaving us open to new challenges going forward.

Labour did not move a motion to make payments; they know that’s illegal. What they did was move a motion asking for more information to come back next year on the cost of making payments, continuing to mislead workers for another six months.

The legal position isn’t going to change and in six months we would be back here still legally barred from making payments.

This is not the news anyone wanted to hear, but we cannot break the law. What West Dunbartonshire Labour Party and West Dunbartonshire Community Party have done is morally reprehensible.

Deliberately misleading people and toying with their emotions to play cynical party political games. I’m utterly disgusted and yet not surprised.

Anyone needing advice should call the Citizens’ Advice Bureau on 01389 744 690.