A call for constructive pay talks was made this afternoon (Tuesday 31 July) in the Sheffield supertram pay dispute, as a further eight days of strike action were announced.
The call came from Unite, the country’s largest union, which has been trying to convene talks under the auspices of the conciliation service Acas for Thursday (2 August), but, so far, there has been no response from the bosses at South Yorkshire Supertram Ltd.
About 200 drivers and conductors working on the 48-stop light rail tram system have already taken five days of strike action in the dispute over a ‘26 pence an hour’ pay offer.
The strike days are 18,20,22,28 and 30 August, as well as on 1 September. There will also be a 48 hour strike on 24 August. All strikes will start at 01.00.
Unite regional coordinating officer Steve Clark said: “We have strained every sinew to set up constructive talks with the company - we are aiming for Thursday afternoon under the Acas umbrella - but we have had no response from the management to our continued overtures.
“Hopefully, the people of Sheffield will see which side is making every effort to resolve this dispute. The bosses are playing hardball and it is the commuting public that will suffer travel misery as a result.
“Our door is open 24/7 to resolve this dispute before the next round of strike action is due.”
The workers have overwhelmingly rejected the latest revised three-year pay offer from May 2018. Unite said that when the details were analysed it amounted to an increase of just 26p an hour and the union has accused the management of ‘playing a game of smoke and mirrors’.
Unite members voted by 91 per cent for strike action and by 95 per cent for industrial action short of a strike.
Notes to editors:
For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on: 020 3371 2065. Email: email@example.com
- 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.