The five days of strike action by traffic wardens working for APCOA Parking in Hackney, east London in a bid to get a proper sick pay policy has been suspended to allow talks to take place.
The 30 employees were due to strike from just past 12am on Monday (October 12) until midnight on Friday (October 16) against APCOA Parking which has the contract from Hackney council to run the service. The staff have also rejected a 1.5 per cent pay deal for this year.
The workers, members of Unite, previously staged two days of strike action in August, following a 100 per cent vote for strike action.
Unite had also discovered that the company was not paying the London ‘living wage’ (LLW) of £9.15 an hour to the mainly black Asian ethnic minority (BAEM) workforce as it had been wrongly including a non-guaranteed bonus in the calculation and only 60 per cent of workers on average were hitting the bonus target.
“The employers have agreed this morning (October 9) to pay the London ‘living wage’, with backdating being considered,” said Unite regional officer Onay Kasab.
“The management has agreed to negotiate with Unite over a company sick pay scheme. We have agreed to do this under the auspices of the conciliation service, Acas.
“I recommended to our members this morning that we suspend the action and engage in the Acas process which was accepted,” he added.
“We shall be going into these talks in a constructive frame of mind and we hope that APCOA Parking will also engage in a positive fashion.”
The dispute came against the backdrop of the Fair Deal For Local Government campaign by Unite’s London and Eastern region which has almost 300,000 members. The campaign is aimed against privatisation and austerity in local government.