metal components

Newark workers in three week strike at bearings factory in work/life balance row

Workers at NSK Bearings Europe Ltd in Newark, Nottinghamshire are currently staging a three week strike in a work/life balance dispute.

The 27 workers in the grinding department, members of Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, started an all-out strike on Monday (4 March) which runs until 26 March. It builds on the overtime ban that started on 2 January.

The dispute is over a shift pattern which includes some contractual weekend working split across two weekends, as well as a contract that allows the management to extend Friday working by four hours which is a regular occurrence.

This is on top of a banked hours’ scheme which expects Unite members to already work up to an additional 10 hours on top of their contracted week. (Banked hours are the way that workers make up time after there is planned stoppage to production).

Unite regional officer Andy Shaw said: “Our members have stepped up their overtime ban to a three week strike in a bid to bring the bosses to the negotiating table so that we can get a fair work/life balance agreement.

“This shift places an unreasonable expectation on workers which is cutting down the available time for them to spend with their families.

“We also think that the extra banked hours a week to make up for when there is a planned production cessation is excessive.”

The workers voted unanimously for strike action and industrial action short of a strike.

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

Email: shaun.noble@unitetheunion.org

  • Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.

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