Socialist Worker

BBC

Issue No. 1912

WORKERS IN BBC Technology were set to strike this week in protest at privatisation.

BBC Technology provides the IT “nervous system” for the BBC’s broadcasting and internet operations.

They voted 84 percent for strike action earlier this month.

The 1,400 staff in this section will be joined by much smaller numbers from London News IT, who are also threatened with privatisation.

They voted 100 percent for a strike.

Both sections are organised by the Bectu union.

The first strike is planned for 30-31 July, and the second is planned for around 13 August.

This could disrupt coverage of the Olympics and the return of Match of the Day to the BBC.

“We believe that this sale to the private sector is extremely damaging to the long term future of the BBC,” said Bectu assistant general secretary Gerry Morrissey.

“At this stage the people who are opposed to the transfer of BBC technology staff will resist that transfer.

“They will keep resisting until they receive the necessary guarantees on pensions and terms and conditions of their employment”, Morrissey added.

The BBC initially said it could offer no guarantees over pensions and conditions for staff transferring to the “preferred bidder”, which is Siemens.

But since the strike vote it has offered BBC Technology staff a guarantee that they can keep the same pension and employment terms for one year after transfering to the Siemens payroll.

The union has urged members to vote against the one-year offer in a consultative ballot that was to close just before the first strike began.

Bectu is asking for a three- year guarantee of no change in employment terms or compulsory redundancies.


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News
Sat 31 Jul 2004, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1912
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