Anger and concern among workforce at Bombardier management over further outsourcing

Without warning sell-off to ‘Lauak Group’ of France is latest incident of offshoring and outsourcing impacting jobs in Northern Ireland

Bombardier corporate management should remember the determination and strength demonstrated by workers during threat to jobs from US tariffs

August 30th: Susan Fitzgerald, Unite Regional Coordinating Officer responded to news that Bombardier would be selling-off its tubing, piping & systems centres.

“The workforce and its unions were informed only today by management that they are selling their tubing centre (with sites at Mirabelle in Canada and Belfast) to French company, Lauak Group. Despite talk that this sell off will raise revenue for investment in new projects, workers in Belfast see this as a further instance of management taking jobs and skills out of the Belfast site. Continue reading

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Workers at Newry, Mourne and Down district council to be balloted on strike action

white-out-of-red-fullStaff protest confirmed for upcoming council meeting at Downshire Civic Centre, Downpatrick on Monday, 3rd September

All four unions representing employees to bring forward unprecedented, joint consultative ballot on industrial action

August 27th: Alan Perry, chair of the Joint Trade Union side including GMB, NIPSA, SIPTU and UNITE, confirmed that all four trade unions representing staff and employees at Newry, Mourne and Down district council would proceed to a consultative ballot of their members [commencing Friday 31st August] and that the staff would be organising a protest at the September council meeting [Monday 3rd September]. He said,

“Two weeks ago, workers from all four unions passed an overwhelming vote of ‘no confidence’ in the council’s Chief Executive, Liam Hannaway. In the interim, management have done nothing to address their broken relationship with the workforce; indeed they have attempted to play workers against each other by misrepresenting our criticism of senior management in the HR department as being criticism of those employed by the department as a whole. What is more, they have added insult to injury by claiming to be unaware of what is at the root of the workforce’s concerns.

“Senior management in the council have adopted a heavy-handed approach in negotiations around job matching and restructuring around the establishment of the new Super-Council under the Review of Public Administration. They have also failed to engage through the formal negotiating structures with the trade unions.
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Preparations underway for industrial action after Dale Farm Ltd management refuse to address workers’ pay claim


Maintenance workers across three Dale Farm Ltd sites vote 75% in favour of strike action and 80% for industrial action short of strike

Unite representatives invite Dale Farm bosses to last ditch negotiations, including through mediation of Labour Relations Agency

August 19th: Liam Gallagher, speaking for the union’s membership at Dale Farm, called on management to engage in meaningful negotiations following a strong vote for industrial action by members.

“Unite members at three Dale Farm Ltd factories: Cookstown, Ballymena and Cullybacky have voted overwhelmingly to endorse industrial action in a ballot conducted after the collapse of pay negotiations.

“Following on from this result, on Thursday last, Union representatives wrote to Dale Farm Ltd management outlining their determination to secure a decent pay increase for the maintenance staff at all three sites. We offered last minute negotiations either directly, or through the offices of the Labour Relations Agency. They must reconsider their refusal to seek mediated negotiation; previously Dale Farm bosses pulled out of LRA talks two days before they were due to have started. Continue reading

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GLL spin on corner-cutting does not address continued Health & Safety concerns at Belfast Leisure Centres

unite-white-out-of-redOutsourced management company tell press they have fifty-five pool plant operators when there are none remaining

Crisis at pools continues with corner-cutting on staffing leading to continued failure to chlorinate and dangerous practice

Unite Regional Officer, Michael Keenan, responded to recent spin from management company Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) which attempted to deflect public opprobrium for its corner-cutting on staffing and health & safety at Belfast leisure centres.

“Unite members working in municipal leisure facilities in Belfast have repeatedly highlighted their concerns over the Health & Safety impact of corner-cutting by GLL at the behest of Belfast City Council. In the past months, we have highlighted how the Jacuzzi at Avoneil had to be closed after the failure to retain pool plant operators led to legionella spores twenty times the legal limit with the water running green; we have also exposed pools being reopened half full and how pools remained open despite protestations of staff after diarrhoea incidents.

“This is all part of the corner-cutting approach taken by outsourced management company, GLL, on behalf of Belfast City Council. Only today concerned workers contacted us to inform us that the pool in Ballysillan remained open despite their protests while an angle-grinder was used to remove unsafe, and inappropriate, tiles which had been recently installed by management. Continue reading

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Unions warn contractors on blacklisting

unite-white-out-of-redJuly 25th: Trade unions Unite and Siptu have issued a joint statement condemning the practice of blacklisting in the construction sector and warning those who engage in what the unions term this “obnoxious behaviour” that they will face a united action against them.

Blacklisting refers to the practice of employers in a sector circulating details of those known to be engaged in trade union activity with a view to preventing their employment in the sector.  The practice is especially widespread in the construction sector, both in Ireland and internationally.

Commenting, Unite Regional Officer for Construction Tom Fitzgerald said:

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