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BMW engine makers strike and protest tomorrow as pensi...

BMW engine makers strike and protest tomorrow as pension dispute deepens

02 May 2017

Striking car workers, making engines for the German car giant BMW at Hams Hall in the West Midlands, will be staging a protest outside the plant tomorrow (Wednesday 3 May) as the fight to stop BMW’s ‘pension robbery’ continues.

Tomorrow’s protest at Hams Hall, Canton Lane, Coleshill B46 1GB starts at 12:30 and coincides with a 24 hour strike involving BMW Hams Hall workers which starts earlier in the day at 06:00. 

Hundreds of workers are expected to down tools tomorrow in the third of eight 24 hour stoppages which have, so far, involved members of Unite working at BMW plants in Cowley, Hams Hall in the West Midlands and Swindon.  

The unprecedented wave of strikes over BMW’s plans to close the final salary pension scheme will see Rolls-Royce car workers at Goodwood, near Chichester join the strike action later this week when they hold a 24 hour stoppage on Friday 5 May. 

The pension scheme’s closure pencilled in for 31 May could see some workers lose up to £160,000 in retirement income. Industrial action, so far, has caused significant disruption and left production lines at a standstill, leaving customers waiting for the delivery of their new vehicles. 

Commenting Unite national officer for BMW Fred Hanna said: “BMW’s bosses need to stop burying their heads in the sand and drop their refusal to talk about affordable options to keep the pension scheme open.

“Unite members at BMW have shown a clear determination to defend their pensions. The industrial action to date has brought production of the iconic Mini to halt and severely disrupted engine production lines.  

“This has not been a step taken lightly by our members who take great pride in producing world beating engines and the world class motorcars which have powered BMW’s record profits and sales.

“BMW bosses need to stop trying to railroad through the pension scheme’s closure and negotiate a settlement which is good for the business and the workforce.” 

BMW’s plan to close the pension scheme by 31 May 2017 comes as latest figures showed a surge in BMW Group’s annual net profit of eight per cent to €6.9 billion, as well as a record year for Mini sales and a six per cent rise in Roll-Royce sales.

ENDS  

For further information please contact Unite head of media and campaigns Alex Flynn on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665869. 

Twitter: @unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1 Web: unitetheunion.org

Notes to editors

24 hour strike action is planned for the following days at the following locations: 

  • Wednesday 3 May – workers at Hams Hall strike 
  • Friday 5 May – workers at Rolls-Royce at Goodwood strike 
  • Tuesday 16 May – workers at Cowley, Goodwood, Hams Hall and Swindon strike 
  • Thursday 18 May - workers at Cowley, Goodwood, Hams Hall and Swindon strike
  • Sunday 21 May – workers at Cowley and Swindon strike 
  • Wednesday 24 May – workers at Goodwood and Hams Hall strike 

• Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.