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Reports round up— Muller workers fight their corner

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Liverpool dock strikes coming soon, East Midlands Railway ballot underway and Beis walkout called off
Issue 2821
Four pickets hold up Unite flags and a placard saying, "Rosters Matter"

Workers want better shift patterns

HGV drivers and shunters at the Muller’s factory in Stonehouse, Gloucestershire completed five days of strikes last weekend.

Some 70 staff began strikes on Friday 26 August and Saturday 27 August. Strikes also took place last Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

The Unite union has accused managers of “bullying” and failing to listen to workers’ demands to keep shifts the same.

Derrick has been a HGV driver at the firm for 20 years. “We came to an agreement in January and the company is now going back on that agreement. It means giving up family time by having to work an extra day at the weekend,” he said.

Bosses have sent both the union and workers intimidating letters against taking action.

Voting on more rail strikes

Workers at Abellio at East Midlands Railways are balloting to strike after bosses refused to make a pay offer. 

The dispute involves Unite, RMT and TSSA union members based at depots in Derby, Leicester and Nottingham. The ballot is set to end on 16 September and could add more workers to the national rail strikes.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “What on Earth are Abellio and the Department for Transport playing at? 

“We are currently in the midst of the worst cost of living crisis in decades and between them they can’t make our members a pay offer.”

A good deal for Red Funnel dispute?

Red Funnel ferry workers who operate the Southampton to Isle of White service have ended their dispute after an improved pay offer.

The 140 workers have received a two-year pay deal. The deal includes pay increases of 4.5 to 6.3 percent backdated to January of this year. 

A further pay increase of 8.6 to 11.3 will be implemented from January 2023. 

The lowest paid workers will receive the largest raise. But each year’s increase is below inflation, making them real-terms pay cuts.

The deal also includes improvements to paid leave, sick pay, food allowances and health benefits.

Workers roll the dice on pay strike

Casinos across London are set to face strikes this weekend. Unite union members who work at London Grosvenor Casino voted by 91 percent for a 72-hour walkout.

Some 150 workers, including croupiers across seven venues the capital, are due to strike. They rejected a retention bonus payment of between £600 and £800.

Action is set to begin at 6am this Friday until 6am next Monday.

Big dock action set for Liverpool

Liverpool dock workers have announced strike dates that will paralyse the Mersey Docks and Harbour Company. 

More than 560 Unite union members—including port operatives and maintenance engineering workers—plan to strike between 19 September and 3 October.

Workers were offered a 7 percent pay rise, which they rejected. They are also angry over bosses’ failure to honour the 2021 pay agreement.

Car parts workers exhaust pay lies

Workers at automotive assembly contractor VFS Southampton Ltd have ended their strike after securing a pay deal worth up to 14 percent for the lowest paid.

The deal sees hourly pay rates increase for 2022 increase by between 11.65 and 14 percent depending on salary.

This also includes a consolidation of attendance bonus to increase wages as well as improvements to sick pay and a new holiday pay agreement.

Venator workers ready for battle

Unite union members at chemical company Venator in Hartlepool are fighting for better pay.

Workers were offered a 5 percent pay rise and voted to strike by 81 percent on an 84 percent turnout.

The next round of strikes begins next Tuesday for four days, and then on 27 September for two days.

Strike off after ISS makes concessions 

The PCS union called off two days of strikes by workers at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy this week.

Outsourced cleaners security guards, reception, post and portage staff had been set to strike over health and safety and leave entitlements. But the union called off the strike after bosses at outsourcer ISS made concessions.

The PCS says two more strike days will go ahead if there’s no final agreement.

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