Global logistics giant UPS could face industrial action in the new year in the escalating row over denying their drivers night-time toilet facilities at its own depots.
Unite the union said that about 350 HGV drivers were not allowed to use toilets at some of UPS’ 50 depots if they turn up with deliveries during the night.
The union dismissed UPS bosses’ alleged security concerns for the nocturnal ban as ‘spurious and mean-spirited’, as drivers then have to search out alternative facilities in the dead of night.
Unite national officer for road transport and logistics Matt Draper said, “For the last year Unite has been pressing the UPS management to show a little humanity and make toilets available for the drivers who arrive at their depots late at night.
“UPS is a global logistics player, operating in some 200 countries, and should be more than able to sort out this wee problem before it causes big reputational damage.
“This nocturnal ban affects about 350 ‘feeder’ drivers who deliver parcels and other packages between UPS depots in the UK, as well as the agency drivers UPS use at night time,” he added. “During the day, there is no problem as the toilets are open.”
A year ago, Unite won a long–running campaign for the right of delivery drivers to use an employer’s toilets while conducting deliveries. Employers in control of non-domestic premises are now obliged to allow people who are not their employees but use their premises to access toilets and washing facilities.
The change in the regulations ended the problem of drivers having to go to the toilet behind bushes, or have to continually ‘hold on’ due to being denied access to toilet facilities.
Matt Draper added, “We believe that we have a very strong case following last year’s change in the regulations and is a matter that may be of great interest to the Health & Safety Executive as the welfare regulations appear to have been flouted by UPS.
“If we can’t break this impasse and a satisfactory toilet regime is not introduced, we will consider balloting for industrial action which would commence in the new year.”