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'Strength in workplace' matters most, admits Unite

28 March 2018

Unite contingent on the March 2014 TUC march, London. Photo Workers.

Unite claims to be continuing to track the impact of Brexit on our industrial sectors by use of a survey – but like many surveys, it just delivers what the people commissioning it want.
The union says that “across the manufacturing sectors employers are using Brexit in pay negotiations or to make new investment uncertain”. Nevertheless, from Rolls-Royce to Heinz, they claim their reps continue to prove by collective bargaining that they are winning substantial pay rises.
The lesson is clear, while serious concerns remain about the form Brexit could take, “our protection comes from our collective strength in the workplace”.

• Graduate trainees at Rolls-Royce have won a fight for travel and accommodations. Being required to work in many different locations during the early years of work can be exciting and possibly reasonable – but when you have to travel about fifty miles from your normal place of work and in some circumstances find accommodation, it can present a significant challenge.

The graduates recently sought union representation to argue their case. The initial reaction of the company was to resist what was a reasonable request. Common sense prevailed and the group of graduates were successful.