Production at Prysmian Cables & Systems in Eastleigh, Hampshire, has been cut by a third as industrial action begins to bite in the dispute over a ‘paltry’ below inflation pay offer, Unite the union, said today (Tuesday 9 October).

Unite understands that the management has reduced the production target for this month from 1,200 to 800 tonnes, as a fifth strike day on 24 October was announced.

Unite, which has 162 members at the company, said the workers have rejected a two per cent pay offer for the year starting January 2018 – when the consumer price index (CPI) is currently running at 2.7 per cent.

Tomorrow (Wednesday 10 October), workers will march from the Chickenhall Lane site at 10.00 and to the bandstand in Eastleigh town centre for a rally addressed by Unite assistant general secretary for manufacturing Tony Burke.

There have been 24 hour stoppages on 26 September and 3 October, with further strikes, already announced, for tomorrow (Wednesday 10 October) and 17 October. A work to rule started on 25 September, including an overtime ban.

Unite regional coordinating officer Debbie Watson said: “The industrial action by our members is starting to have a dramatic impact on production at the factory and we understand that the target figure has been severely cut by a third for the month of October - from 1,200 to 800 tonnes. The strikes are beginning to bite big time.

“The picture is becoming clearer that customers are being adversely affected as there will be delays in fulfilling their orders, which could have an impact on them reaching their own deadlines for project completions.

“More than ever, it is in the company’s interests to get around the table for meaningful talks on an improved offer – otherwise further strike action will be announced in the run-up to Christmas.

“The workers are very disappointed that the company, with its paltry two per cent offer, continues to be unwilling to acknowledge the hard work and commitment they have given to the company in the past year which has enabled orders to be delivered on time.

“They are also outraged at the company’s hypocrisy as another bargaining unit within the group was offered a package which would see a five per cent pay increase on average.”

Members voted by 83 per cent for strike action and by 96 per cent for industrial action, short of strike action.

On its website, the company says: “In the UK Prysmian manufactures energy cables from low voltage to extremely high voltage for land applications.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on: 020 3371 2065

  • Unite represents workers in Britain and Ireland with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.