Unite members at a Sheffield factory that manufactures parts for the automotive industry are striking over a pay dispute.
All 140 shop floor workers at the Bifrangi factory in Attercliffe were on strike for the third time yesterday as negotiations between Unite, and the crankshaft factory (formerly known as Shardlow’s) employers failed to reach a resolution.
Unite submitted a pay claim on behalf of workers last November and had hoped for a settlement in January but Doug Patterson, regional officer for Unite, said: “We tried on numerous occasions to get a proper, meaningful discussion about the money that was due. We believe that the claim we’ve put in is reasonable and affordable, but we are open to meaningful negotiations.”
The claim put forward by the union was for an increase in pay of 2.5% from January this year and, from January 2012, pay in line with the RPI plus one per cent.
Bifrangi’s final offer to its workers was for a measly 1% rise, with another 0.5% and £1,000 payout per worker if performance targets were met.
Unite has suggested a compromise: they would accept Bifrangi’s offer if the targets, which they believed to be unrealistic, were removed. But employers refused it.
Doug said: “If the offer was paid in full, it would cost them less to pay out on our claim than what they were offering, but we don’t think they intend to pay that.”
Italy-based Bifrangi’s offer has been withdrawn and there is no pay offer on the table.
The strikers have been on the picket line for the past two Fridays in 24-hour actions.
The latest 24-hour strike started at 9pm on Thursday, and another is planned from 6am on Monday.
Send messages of support via Doug Patterson at Unite.