Unite, the UK’s leading union, is warning of impending industrial action if workers at Sunrise Medical in Brierley Hill, Dudley, vote for strike action in a dispute over pay.

Major changes

The workers who have worked hard in recent years to support Sunrise Medical through major organisational change, the Covid-19 pandemic and Brexit are seeking at least a three per cent increase in pay and an additional day of holiday for Christmas Eve.

Due to the management’s unsatisfactory response and a breakdown in the pay talks, workers feel they have no option but to ballot for industrial action.

Ballot papers sent

Ballot papers will be sent out from today (Thursday 13 May) and the ballot will close on Thursday 27 May. If members vote for industrial action, strikes could begin next month.

Dedicated workforce

Unite regional officer Su Lowe said: “The workforce at Sunrise Medical have repeatedly gone the extra mile to ensure that the company is a success.

“However, despite their dedication and commitment, even the loss of a colleague to COVID, management has failed to support their aspirations for a pay rise.

“As a result members of Unite at Sunrise Medical believe they have been left with no option but to ballot for industrial action.

“If strike action does occur it will inevitably cause serious disruption to the supply of electric wheelchairs and will cause concern to the company’s customers.

“Unite believes that this dispute can still be resolved via negotiation but in order to do so Sunrise Medical needs to make a realistic pay offer. The door is open, we just need the company to step up.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

During the coronavirus crisis Unite is working to keep workers and the public safe, to defend jobs and to protect incomes.

For media enquiries ONLY please contact Unite senior communications officer Barckley Sumner on 07802 329235 or 0203 371 2067.

Email: [email protected]

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