Ford strike may be averted after new talks
PUBLISHED: 09:00 05 November 2011
The first nationwide strike in 40 years by workers at Brentwood car giant Ford may have been averted following talks last week.
Industrial action at the car company – which employs more than 700 workers in its Warley HQ and 2,000 at the nearby Dunton plant – was expected after talks broke down in April.
Pensioners staged several protests outside Ford’s Eagle Way offices earlier this year against plans to change the way their pensions were paid out.
Three long days of negotiations between unions and management took place last week, and a deal may now have been reached, although the exact details of it are still unknown.
A union negotiator who was involved in the talks told the Recorder that the union would be recommending the workforce accepts the new offer from management.
He said: “They’ve put a new offer on the table and it improves wages to recover most of the losses from the pension changes.
“We’ll have a ballot on whether people are prepared to accept the improvement.”
A Ford spokesman said: “Ford’s aim in these negotiations is to maintain the overall standards of pay, benefits and employment security of our employees and to do so in a way that positions our employment package for the future.”
The strike action was threatened over proposals to calculate pension payments using the Consumer Price Index rather than the Retail Price Index. Further negotiations are due to take place.
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