Unite members at Chep based in Trafford Park in Manchester are celebrating today (April 27) after voting to accept an inflation-beating pay deal and to end their long running strike.
The workers will receive a 9 per cent pay increase which on average is worth £2,500. Other elements of the deal, including a £1000 lump sum and three extra days of annual leave this year, mean that the total package is worth as much as 14 per cent while real inflation (RPI) runs at 9 per cent.
The company has also agreed to address the union’s concerns about excessive disciplinary sanctions and to further talks to address pay parity with other Chep sites.
The Unite members, employed by the pallet supplier, have been on strike since December 2021 and were in the process of being balloted to continue their industrial action into the summer.
The workers have been calling on the company to increase pay to help address the cost of living crisis facing the workers and to recognise their contribution through the pandemic.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “I’m very proud of Unite’s reps and members at Chep. This was a tough dispute but the workers stood their ground and won an excellent deal. The workers knew that the company could afford a fair wage so they kept up the fight and they won.
“This victory is more proof that Unite is, without a doubt, dedicated to improving the pay, terms and conditions of its members.
Unite regional officer Ian McCluskey added, “Chep has finally listened and acted. Thanks to the bravery of the workers at Trafford Park the company has delivered a pay deal that recognises the workers’ contribution through the pandemic and addresses the cost of living crisis. The workers can now get back to work with their heads held high.”
Chep UK, which is based in Trafford Park, Manchester, repairs and supplies pallets for supporting and transporting goods to a host of prominent companies including InBev, Heinz, Heineken, A&B Containers, Encric and TDS.
Unite is dedicated to advancing the jobs, pay and conditions of its members and will fight back against any efforts to diminish workers’ living standards.
By Barckley Sumner