Strike action endorsed by 93% of workers in ballot with 91% turnout
Industrial action likely to result in disruption to distribution of UK newspapers and magazines
June 2nd: Unite members at EM News Distribution are set to commence strike action for improved pay tomorrow after an overwhelming ballot in favour of industrial action.
The strike action will see workers stage a five-hour stoppage across shifts at the NI news and magazine distributor. The action is likely to result in significant disruption to distribution of newspapers and magazines across Northern Ireland.
Speaking ahead of his participation in the Labour Relations Agency on behalf of the union, Regional Officer, Sean Smyth, called on management to adopt a more conciliatory approach:
“The EM News Distribution employees we represent are paid little more than the minimum wage for skilled activities. This situation has resulted in a very strong endorsement of strike action in the ballot.
“Rather than engaging in serious negotiations to resolve this situation, management have responded by threatening to ‘lock-out’ workers if they take strike action. This has only strengthened the workers’ resolve to secure fair pay and increased the likelihood of action escalating after tomorrow.
“Unite is keen to avoid strike action which is likely to have a highly disruptive impact on the distribution of newspapers and magazines across Northern Ireland. We are calling on management to adopt a more conciliatory attitude in the negotiations in the Labour Relations Agency later on today. We remain confident that this strike action can be avoided if this highly profitable company addresses the issue of poverty-pay within its workforce”, Mr Smyth concluded.