GSK workers to strike

Hundreds of workers employed by pharmaceutical giant GSK to strike throughout May in pay dispute

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Hundreds of workers employed by pharmaceutical giant GSK will stage a series of walkouts throughout May in a dispute over pay.

The 750 workers who are members of Unite voted for strike action having rejected the company’s significantly below inflation rate pay offer of a six per cent pay increase and a one off lump sum of £1,300. This is a substantial real terms pay cut with the current true inflation rate (RPI) standing at 13.5 per cent.

Strike action will be spread throughout May with workers at all six sites Barnard Castle, Irvine, Montrose, Ware, Worthing and Ulverston striking on different dates at different times to maximise the effectiveness of the industrial action.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “This is an incredibly wealthy company that can fully afford to pay its workers a fair pay offer. This is a classic example of a company seeking to further boost its profits at the expense of its workers.

“Unite has a laser like focus on defending and enhancing the jobs, pay and conditions of its members and the workforce at GSK will be receiving Unite’s complete support.”

GSK is an incredibly wealthy company its latest result reveal it made an operating profit of £8.15 billion, a 26 per cent increase on the previous year.

The workers undertake a variety of roles at the company and include: engineers, process technicians, laboratory analysts, warehouse workers and fire officers.

Unite national officer Tony Devlin added, “Strike action will inevitably result in widespread disruption across GSK’s operations, but the company has brought this dispute on itself. It has had every opportunity to make a pay offer which meets member expectations, but it has failed to do so.

“GSK has effectively stuck two fingers up to its workforce by walking away from the pay negotiations.”

By Barckley Sumner