Workers at two sites of a Gateshead company, which makes laminated glass, are on strike this week over ‘a paltry and insulting’ pay offer.
About 112 employees at Tyneside Safety Glass started their seven days of strike action yesterday (Monday 16 June) at the Kingsway and 7th Avenue sites on the Team Valley Industrial Estate.
The strike is from 05.00 to 19.00 each day and also includes a continuous overtime ban.
Unite, the country’s largest union which represents the workers, said that the company could well afford to be more generous, especially as it awarded the highest paid director a 14 per cent pay rise last year and shifted £750,000 from the company’s account to the owner’s trust fund.
The company had offered a three-year deal – three per cent in the first year, and then two per cent in the two subsequent years – but Unite said that this deal had strings attached to make the deal self-funding.
Unite regional officer Fazia Hussain-Brown said: “Our members rejected the paltry and insulting ‘strings attached’ deal by more than 90 per cent as the company was giving with one hand and taking with the other.
“Our hardworking members and their families are faced with the continuing cost of living crisis, with household bills going through the roof and they deserve a more generous pay deal.
“Tyneside Safety Glass claims that it has no money for a pay rise for its employees, but it seems to have plenty of cash to give to one of its directors and to lavishly top up the owner’s trust fund.
“The management’s plea of poverty does not ring true and we urge them to get around the table urgently to negotiate a fair and equable settlement, so our members can continue to contribute to the prosperity of the company.
“The strike is solid and has been well-supported by the Tyne and Wear community.”
The company makes laminated and toughened glass for bus windows and windscreens, as well as bulletproof items.
For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940 and/or the Unite press office on 020 3371 2065.
Twitter: @unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1
• 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.