Posted: Fri 5th Jun 2015

Tata steel: fourth union votes to take strike action.

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Jun 5th, 2015

Tata steel workers including those based at Shotton who are members of the Unite union have today voted to go on strike, the decision follows three other unions Community, GMB and Ucatt who all backed strike action last week.

Members of Unite voted 70 percent in favour of a strike over Tata Steel’s proposal to change their pension scheme.

The four unions represent 17,000 UK steel workers and if a strike goes ahead it will be biggest labour dispute in British steel in 30 years.

Members of trade union Unite voted 70 percent in favour of a strike over Tata Steel’s proposal to change their pension scheme.

Unite national officer for steel Paul Reuter said.

“We have offered Tata Steel UK the savings it says it needs. Instead the company is hell bent on making people who work in a physically demanding environment graft unnecessarily for a further five years to get their full pension,” 

A spokesperson for Tata Steel said:

“Everyone agrees that change is needed to resolve the challenges facing our pension scheme which has a projected shortfall of more than £2 billion.”

“We have worked hard to find a fair and balanced way of overcoming these challenges. We are disappointed therefore that no shared recommendation with the unions could be reached.”

Tata Steel ‘took’ to twitter to claim the number of Unite members taking part in the ballot fell below the 50 percent turnout a threshold being proposed by the Government, something disputed in replies to the tweet.

Anything below 50 percent turnout would be deemed invalid if proposals put forward in the Queens speech are passed, currently balloting rules do not require any specific level of participation by union members.

Tata Steel will announce new measures shortly to lessen the impact of the proposed pension scheme changes, the spokesman said.

The National Trade Union Steel Co-ordinating Committee, which represents Community, GMB, UCATT and Unite, will meet early next week to discuss what action to take.

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