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Beerworkers Archive


Post date: 12/05/2010 - 21:57

Technicality stopped Blackburn brewery workers' strike

PLANNED strike by Thwaites staff was called off because of a legal technicality in a ‘massive blow’ to workers, it has emerged.

Employees at the brewery firm’s sites in Blackburn balloted last month in a row over sick pay but action was cancelled at the 11th hour.

However, it has now emerged that the proposed strike by 100 GMB union members failed because of a technicality, not because staff and Thwaites bosses reached a settlement.

Some members who had already accepted changes to the company’s sick pay scheme then voted in the strike ballot, rendering it invalid.

PLANNED strike by Thwaites staff was called off because of a legal technicality in a ‘massive blow’ to workers, it has emerged.

Employees at the brewery firm’s sites in Blackburn balloted last month in a row over sick pay but action was cancelled at the 11th hour.

However, it has now emerged that the proposed strike by 100 GMB union members failed because of a technicality, not because staff and Thwaites bosses reached a settlement.

Some members who had already accepted changes to the company’s sick pay scheme then voted in the strike ballot, rendering it invalid.

The new system, which will come into force on January 1, will see staff get three months’ full pay followed by three months’ half pay in any two-year period.

Previously employees were entitled to six months’ full pay and then six months’ half pay.

Neil Holden, GMB shop steward at Thwaites’ Penny Street site, said: “This is a massive blow for staff.

“By the time we arranged future action, it would be into January when the new policy takes force, so there is nothing else we can do.”

Thwaites said: “All employees were consulted fully and their concerns and suggestions were carefully listened to.”