Leicester SPS staff to strike

Leicester SPS staff strike over proposed ‘penury-inducing’ fire and rehire cuts of up to £3,000

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Leicester workers at aerospace parts firm SPS Technologies will strike over ‘penury-inducing’ fire and rehire cuts that will cost staff up to £3,000 a year, Unite said today (March 9).

Around 200 Unite members at SPS’s Barkby Road site will strike over fire and rehire proposals that would result in reductions to overtime pay, sick pay, paid breaks, shift premiums and other terms and conditions.

The termination of the current contracts and rehiring onto new ones would see staff lose between £2,500 and £3,000 from their annual salaries and force many into financial difficulties.

Unite said the discontinuous 24-hour strikes, which will take place on March 12, 19, 22 and 26, as well as a separate overtime ban, will result in ‘serious disruption’ to SPS’s operations.

The workers will be holding socially distanced picket lines outside the Barkby Road site during the strikes.

Unite regional officer Lakhy Mahal said, “Our members are incandescent at SPS’s fire and rehire threats, particularly in light of their hard work keeping the company operational during the pandemic. It is shameful that SPS is using this terrible virus as an opportunity to attack its workers’ terms and conditions.

“These penury-inducing cuts would see workers lose between £2,500 and £3,000 a year for performing the same amount of work,” Mahal added. “If implemented, much of the workforce will be forced to take up pay day loans and second jobs simply to get by.

“SPS’s leadership should realise that this dispute will continue to escalate until an offer is put forward that our members can accept.

“Unite’s door is always open and SPS can prevent the serious disruption these strikes will cause to the company’s operations and reputation by returning to the negotiating table with a serious offer.”

By Ryan Fletcher

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