The case of the Dairylea Dunker is centre stage in a row about the increasing number of spurious disciplinary cases being generated by EDF Energy bosses.
Unite, the country’s largest union, is threatening industrial action, unless a driver sacked for allegedly driving while eating a Dairylea Dunker is reinstated at a disciplinary appeal hearing in Bexleyheath tomorrow (Tuesday 21 October).
Unite said that in the last year there had been about 20 disciplinary cases in the metering section where the union has about 500 members.
Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “We are campaigning at EDF Energy against the number of cases going to disciplinary hearings, the number of disciplinary warnings and sackings on the flimsiest of evidence.
“We believe that the company has decided to impose harsher penalties as a matter of policy.
“Our member has been sacked for allegedly eating a Dairylea Dunker while driving. He is absolutely clear that he was neither eating nor doing anything apart from driving.
“The evidence is allegedly based on a statement from an HR manager who happened to be driving on the same stretch of the M25 whose powers of observation are so great that she is able to spot the make of a soft cheese product from another lane of the UK’s busiest motorway.
“Not only that, but she was able to memorise a registration number until she could write it down.
“Our members think this takes the biscuit and have made it clear that if he is sacked, they want to be balloted for strike action. We believe this to be a problem not just among the metering staff, but a wider problem across EDF.”
In August, Unite achieved ‘a great pay victory’ for its members, who install meters and deal with alleged electricity theft, after they took three days of strike action.
For further information please contact Unite regional officer Onay Kasab on 07771 818 637 and/or Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940
Notes to editors
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.