By Isabel Ringrose
Downloading PDF. Please wait... Issue 2911

Industrial round-up: Will tractor workers plough on with strike?

Plus new strikes called for PCS jobcentre security guards and Unite refuse worker's walkout set in Streeting’s area
Issue 2911
Workers are currently voting on a new pay offer. (Picture: UniteLondonEast on Twitter)

Workers are currently voting on a new pay offer. (Picture: UniteLondonEast on Twitter)

Unite union leaders have suspended strikes by more than 500 workers employed at CNH Industrial’s Basildon tractor factory in Essex.

Unite cancelled action scheduled for Tuesday to Thursday last week and this week while strikers vote on a new offer.

The offer is 5 percent, which is 1 percent more than the previous offer. The vote runs until Tuesday next week.

Bosses in 2022 agreed to pay the rate of a yearly average of CPI inflation— which amounts to 7.4 percent for 2024.

Voting on this low offer has broken the momentum of the strikes, which had seen well attended picket lines.

All departments are back in as usual and production lines are rolling. Unite is making no recommendations on the vote due to “pressure” from employers.

And Unite has not called mass meetings to discuss the deal. Socialist Worker supporter Claire said, “Members I spoke to are not happy.

“Some felt the union should have rejected the offer straight off and not suspended strikes.

“Most were clear that they would reject the deal and want to bring the strike to all-out.”

The workers also lost their line allowance last week, which could leave them between £6 and £16 a week worse off.

“Those I spoke to are hoping for rejection as they know if they don’t reject this, they will obviously lose financially. But it also will leave them more vulnerable to other attacks on the working environment,” Claire added.

The strikers have to stand firm in their fight to take on the bosses.


Jobcentre guards set for a hot summer of strikes

Some 200 PCS union members working as security guards in jobcentres across Britain completed a seven day strike over pay last Sunday.

In a positive move, some of their picket lines were held jointly with GMB union members also working as jobcentre security guards who were also on strike.

Employer G4S, which turns over billions of pounds every year, pays only the minimum wage. PCS has scheduled 18 more days of strikes in response to the lack of movement from G4S.

The next round of strikes is set to begin on the day of the general election next Thursday to Sunday 7 July.

This group of workers will then strike from 15 July to 21 July and from 29 July to 4 August.

The GMB scheduled strikes from Monday to Sunday next week and then from 15 to 21 July and 29 July to 4 August.

To see the list of picket lines to visit across England go to tinyurl.com/PCSJobCentre


Refuse walkout in Streeting’s area

Refuse workers in the London Borough of Redbridge are set to strike from Monday next week until Sunday next week.

Redbridge is in shadow health secretary Wes Streeting’s constituency. The workers are employed by Redbridge Civic Services Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the council.

But they face worse conditions than council-employed workers. Workers consistently start and finish late due to vehicles breaking down.

Workers’ contracts say they should work extra hours only in “exceptional circumstances”, but bosses enforce this every day.


Cleaning up low pay attack in Dulwich

Cleaners at a school in Dulwich, south London, are balloting to strike because of changes to their terms and conditions.

Members of the UVW union at the James Allen’s Girls School (Jags) are angry that outsourcer DB Services didn’t consult them about the changes.


Strikes escalate at Greenwich council

Nearly 150 workers employed by Greenwich council in south London are set to escalate strikes next week after the local authority brought in plans that would see them lose nearly a third of their wages.

The workers, who are members of the Unite union, work in the repairs and investment service department. Workers plan to strike on Monday and Tuesday next week and 15 and 16 July.


Jiffy workers push the pay envelope

Over 50 workers at the Jiffy packaging plant in Winsford, Cheshire, are continuing pay strikes.

Bosses offered workers in the Unite union a mere 1.5 percent pay increase.

Unite’s members are demanding an 8 percent pay increase backdated to 1 April 2024.

Workers also want an improvement in their sick pay. Strikes are planned to continue until 13 July.


It’s the season to fight at Amazon

A group of Amazon seasonal delivery drivers, victims of a migrant worker scam, are fighting back after being cheated out of their wages.

They were lured to Britain by an Amazon subcontractor. The delivery drivers who are in the UVW union are appealing to all workers in Amazon who may have suffered similar exploitation to unionise.

Contact the UVW union at tinyurl.com/UVWcontact

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