Unite announces series Diageo strike dates

Unite has announced a series of strike action dates at Diageo’s Leven, Cameron Bridge and Shieldhall plants.

Talks at ACAS broke down between the trade unions involved in the dispute with Diageo last week due to the failure to achieve a reasonable pay increase for the workforce. The dates of the strike action, which will involve up to 500 Unite members, are as follows:

  • 18–19 September – Cameron Bridge and Leven from 08.00–07.59
  • 19–20 September – Shieldhall from 18.00–17.59
  • 26–27 September – Shieldhall from 18.00-17.59
  • 26–27 September – Cameron Bridge and Leven from 22.00-21.59

The dispute relates to the annual pay award as Unite’s membership rejected Diageo’s latest offer of 2.8 per cent pay through the consolidation of the product allowance.

In July, Diageo announced an increase in pre-tax profits in the year to £4.2 billion. The company’s brands include Smirnoff, Bailey’s, Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Tanqueray and Gordon’s gin. The company has also submitted plans for a flagship whisky experience on Edinburgh’s Princes Street, at a cost of £150 million.

Unite regional industrial officer Bob MacGregor said: “Diageo has made minimal effort to resolve this dispute through negotiations, which is the central reason why talks broke down at Acas last week. Unite entered those talks with our sole objective being to achieve a fair pay award for the workforce and in doing so to avert strike action. Remember, this is a giant in the drinks industry which just announced an increase in pre-tax profits of £4.2 billion.

“Unite warned weeks ago that unless Diageo made a fair offer then our membership would take strike action. We have now reached that point. The door always remains open to further negotiations but strike action is now imminent.”

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