MEAN BOSSES at a meat factory in Kirkconnell, Dumfriesshire, are docking their workers £1,000 a week for the time they spend in the toilet. Around 200 staff at the Brown Brothers' factory have been issued with smart cards which deduct their pay for the time they're away from the factory floor. 'We have to go through a turnstile to the toilet,' said one angry worker.
'One week they took an hour off me, which is £5.28. There are 190 workers here so the company is saving £1,000 a week in wages. The motto among the staff is, 'Have a break-have a quick crap'.'
Workers are fighting for a better pay deal at the factory, including scrapping the docking for toilet use scheme. The TGWU union will be balloting its members in the factory to take strike action over the next few weeks.
Farming out the struggle
OVER 600 members of the Prospect civil servants' union at the Scottish Agricultural College were set to take strike action for three hours on Thursday of this week. Management wanted to push through a pay deal that would leave the majority of workers with no pay increase.
In a 75 percent ballot turnout nearly 63 percent voted to strike and more voted for industrial action. Workers will now work to rule and undertake only their contractual duties. A second stoppage is set for Wednesday 22 January.
Staff will walk out on campuses in Aberdeen, Ayr and Edinburgh as well as 23 advisory offices and eight livestock disease surveillance centres throughout Scotland.
Both eyes on privatisation
THE DEPARTMENT of Work and Pensions (DWP) filestores is under threat of being privatised and/or centralised. The national filestore network comprises 36 filestores and employs 800 people.
We deal with attendance allowance, disability living allowance, mobility allowance and war pensions. These are personal records of members of the public. We, and our PCS civil servants' union, believe they should stay in the public sector. We have been lobbying our local MPs for the last two months.
We are working to oppose and stop this programme. We do not deserve to be put up to auction to the highest bidder.
M H PAIN, Nelson PCS rep
Further details from Keith Wylie, PCS national officer, Leeds HQ, Lisbon Street, Leeds LS1 4LX.
More action at Resourcesaver?
WORKERS AT Resourcesaver, who are responsible for household recycling collections in Bristol, are waiting for the result of a ballot on the latest proposals to resolve their dispute.
The dispute began after management went back on a deal to cut working hours. The key issue preventing a settlement has been the workers' demand that Charlie McCaulder, operations manager in Bristol, should be removed.