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‘Serious well-being concerns’

Total’s oil and gas platforms face shutdown as Unite members vote to strike
Barckley Sumner, Thursday, June 28th, 2018

Members of Unite employed by Total E&P working on North Sea oil and gas platforms are set to begin industrial action next month in a dispute over pay and working hours.


If strike action goes ahead Unite believes that the three platforms affected — Alwin, Dunbar and Elgin — will be forced to cease production.


The dispute concerns the company’s wage review and its plans to force workers to increase their offshore working time.


The membership voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action and there was an even clearer mandate of 100 per cent in favour of industrial action short of strike.


Unite is currently in the process of consulting members about what type of industrial action will be called and when. Dates for industrial action are expected to be announced early next week, with strikes beginning in July.


“The overwhelming vote in favour of strike action demonstrates our members’ anger at Total’s proposals,” said Unite regional officer Wullie Wallace.


“Our members simply want to be properly paid for the work they undertake in a dangerous and difficult environment,” he added.


“Total’s plans to force workers to spend even longer offshore would drive a coach and horses through workers’ work/life balance and would result in them spending even less time with family, friends and loved ones. This raises serious health and wellbeing concerns.


“There is still time for industrial action to be avoided and Unite’s door remains open if Total is prepared to make a renewed offer and return to the negotiating table.”


The latest ballot result puts further pressure on the company. Last week Unite members employed at Total’s Shetland gas plant voted for industrial action in a dispute over changes to their rota system.


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