Bentley Motor workers at the luxury car maker’s Crewe headquarters have massively backed industrial action in a consultative ballot over plans to close the defined benefit pension scheme, Unite announced today (April 10).
Unite members, including car production workers, senior staff and managers, backed strike action by 98 per cent on a 92 per cent turnout in the consultative ballot over plans which could see workers losing tens of thousands of pounds a year in retirement income.
Warning of mounting anger over the plans which have led to workers accusing Bentley of being ‘pension snatchers’, Unite said it would now make arrangements to hold a full statutory industrial action ballot which could result in strike action unless Bentley reconsiders its plans.
“This massive vote in favour of action demonstrates the anger and strength of feeling among workers over Bentley’s pension proposals which could result in workers losing thousands of pounds in retirement income,” said Unite regional officer Phil Morgan.
“Unite will now be making arrangements to move to a full statutory industrial action ballot which given the strength of feeling could result in industrial action in the coming months.
“The union has presented counter proposals to the company as an alternative to the proposed closure of the pension scheme.
“We would urge bosses at Bentley and its parent company Volkswagen to listen to the workforce and further engage in meaningful talks with Unite aimed at reaching a mutually acceptable position,” he added.
The proposals affect 1,200 of Bentley’s longest serving workers who are members of the Rolls Royce and Bentley pension fund.