13 September 2012
Drivers threaten industrial action over redundancy plans
A group of more than 150 drivers in the north of England have reacted to the prospect of redundancy by deciding to take industrial action.
Last week (September 5th), haulage giant Eddie Stobart Ltd (ESL) announced it had issued 90-day job loss notices to the professionals at the Tesco distribution centre in Doncaster after taking up control of the transport workforce from the retailer.
In response to this news, the drivers held a vote yesterday to determine their next move and it has now emerged that in excess of 90 per cent of them believe that taking some form of industrial action is the best way forward.
ESL has made no promise to the drivers that they will be re-assigned after the conclusion of their 90-day consultation and Harriet Eisner, regional officer for Unite, has indicated the group will decide over the next few days what type of industrial action to opt for.
Ms Eisner - whose trade union has more than 1.5 million members in a wide range of employment sectors - said the full impact of ESL's decision is now beginning to sink in with the drivers because, as things stand, they will not have a job by Christmas.
"They are shocked, angry and devastated, as what they feared would occur when the transfer took place has happened so quickly and ruthlessly," she added.
The union representative went on to say that while Unite is still in talks with ESL over the possibility of changes being made to its decision, the company's management "remains intransigent that it wants to get rid of the drivers".
"Unite will be mobilising support in the community to spearhead the campaign to save these jobs ... [we] campaigned for these jobs to be safeguarded once the Transfer of Undertaking Protection of Employment arrangements came into force at the beginning of August," she added.
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Posted by Trusha Vyas