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‘Incredible disrespect’

Unite slams whisky giant over closure plans
David Eyre, Monday, May 15th, 2017

Unite the union has accused whisky giant Chivas Brothers of ‘disrespect’ to workers.



The company – owned by French-based multinational Pernod Ricard – confirmed in November last year that it wants to close its operations in Paisley, moving bottling work to Kilmalid near Dumbarton.



In talks with West Dunbartonshire Council about its plans for a new factory in Dumbarton, Chivas managers said the Paisley site ‘did not deliver an efficient operation’.



Unite regional officer Pat McIlvogue said, “Our members at Chivas help deliver massive profits. We’re talking about a company that makes £318m a year, and which earns £227,000 per employee. In that context, to accuse any of their workers of being ‘inefficient’ shows incredible disrespect.



“That disrespect is also shown by the recent paltry wage offer that Chivas has made to workers at Paisley and at Kilmalid, which could see them lose money in real terms.



“The best companies do well on the back of the hard work of their staff, but they recognise that they need to share the rewards of success and treat their workers with basic decency and respect. At the moment, Chivas Brothers is failing to meet that standard.”



Members of Unite the union have rejected a 1.5 per cent pay offer backdated to July 2016, followed by three years of rises that would barely keep pace with inflation.



“This offer is fundamentally unfair and we’re continuing to discuss with our members how we can persuade Chivas to bring a fair settlement to the table,” McIlvogue added.



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