Nearly 1,000 workers at transport and logistics giant, Kuehne + Nagel Drinks Logistics (KNDL) are being balloted this week for industrial action over continual breaches in working agreements.
Unite, the country’s largest union, started balloting its 970 driver, drayman and warehouse members at 27 sites in England, Scotland and Wales today (Tuesday 13 August) for strike action and industrial action short of a strike. The ballot closes on Wednesday 28 August.
Should industrial action take place, it will hit the deliveries of such brand names as Britvic soft drinks, Heineken, Kronenbourg, Shepherd Neame and John Smith’s.
The issue at the centre of the dispute is the way the company has ridden roughshod over the National Ways Agreement which governs the terms and conditions of the workforce.
Unite national officer for the food and drinks sector Rhys McCarthy said: “In recent months the management at KNDL has rode roughshod over the national agreement and has unilaterally started imposing changes to working conditions for our members without meaningful consultation.
“Unite’s repeated attempts to rectify these breaches have been met with intransigence by the management and, as a last resort, our members are being balloted for industrial action.
“We call on the management to enter into constructive talks with Unite immediately to restore good industrial relations by adhering to the national agreement that they signed up to.”
The company supplies pubs and the hospitality industry; and Unite warns any industrial action would cause severe disruption to deliveries.
The sites being balloted are at: Aberdeen; Bathgate (West Lothian); Birmingham; Bristol; Chandlers Ford (Hampshire); Carlisle; Croydon; Dagenham; Devizes (Wiltshire); Dundee; Faversham (Kent); Greenford (Middlesex), Inverness, Liverpool; Manchester; Newark (Nottinghamshire); Northampton; Norwich; Plymouth; Preston; Reading; Stockton-on-Tees (Cleveland); Swansea; Wakefield; Warrington; Washington (Tyne and Wear); and Welwyn Garden City.
For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.