Workers at whisky maker Chivas Brothers have voted massively to reject a pay offer, accusing the company of corporate greed.
Members of Unite the union had been offered a 1.5 per cent increase backdated to July 2016, followed by three years of rises that would barely keep pace with inflation, and could see them lose money in real terms. The workers would also lose a holiday premium from June this year.
Today (Wed 15 Mar) the union announced that 94 per cent of members had rejected the offer in a consultative ballot.
In November last year, Chivas Brothers announced that it was to close its bottling operations in Paisley and move all staff to a new facility in Dumbarton.
Unite regional officer Pat McIlvogue said: “Chivas Brothers say the closure of the Paisley plant will lead to future savings, but the workforce feel they are being forced to suffer to finance the investment, both though paltry pay increases and cuts to terms and conditions.
“This is sheer corporate greed. Chivas Brothers are making massive profits thanks to the hard work of our members - their last reported profits after tax were £318 million. Their profits per employee amount to over £227,000. Their highest-paid director gets nearly a million pounds.
“Scotland is facing an inequality crisis because workers are getting less and less, while rich executives and shareholders are getting more and more. We can’t allow that kind of unfair economy to continue.
“Fairness demands that our members receive a pay increase that properly reflects the work they do on behalf of the company. Unite is determined that they will get it.
“We will now seek further talks with the company and go back to our members with the outcome. They will then decide our future course of action.”
Notes to editors
For more information contact Unite Scotland press officer David Eyre on 07960 451631 / firstname.lastname@example.org