Wednesday 20 July 2016

ATUC sends support and solidarity to Unite and RMT Wood Group members who have voted overwhelmingly for strike action

Aberdeen Trade Union Council is sending messages of support and solidarity to our colleagues in Unite and RMT working for the Wood Group across Shell operated assets.

Almost 400 members of Unite and RMT unions working for Wood Group across eight Shell oil and gas platforms in the North Sea will be striking for the first time in a generation in a dispute over 30 per cent pay cuts and changes to allowances, it was announced today (Monday 18 July).

The first 24-hour stoppage will take place on 26 July, this will be followed by a series of other stoppages over the following weeks.

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A ballot of Wood Group employees coordinated between the two unions has returned with a massive majority supporting industrial action.

The ballot results from both unions are well over the 50% turnout threshold and have huge majorities in support of industrial action in the form of strike and action short of strike. In the case of Unite 99.1% voted in favour of industrial action while 98.5% of RMT members voted to support industrial action.

The first 24 hour stoppage will take place on 26th July followed by a series of other stoppages over the following weeks.

John Boland, Unite Regional Officer said; “Despite the best efforts of the full time officials and workforce shop stewards to broker a deal with the company, talks have failed to find an acceptable deal for the workforce. We now find ourselves forced down the route of industrial action".

"That said, we remain available for talks should the company wish to consider an alternative offer. However, any talks must respect the workers and especially with regards to exercising their democratic rights in a dispute situation. Therefore the move by Shell to engage a scab labour workforce through various agencies to cover any potential industrial action is extremely disturbing.”

Jake Molloy, RMT Regional Organiser said; “After two rounds of redundancy, the imposition of an additional 4 to 5 weeks of work annually, forced to work a 3:3 rota, the increase in workload, and the restrictions on leave, this battered and bruised workforce are being told they have to accept all of this with a reduction in salary of anything from 10 to 30%. The workforce message is clear, ‘Enough is Enough’ and it’s little wonder we find ourselves in this situation.”

Unite and RMT are members of the Offshore Coordinating Group of trade unions.