DHL workers in Cumbernauld to take strike action

DHL Supply Chain Warehouse The dispute at DHL Supply Chain mainly involves warehouse and logistics staff

Workers at Cumbernauld-based DHL Supply Chain are to take strike action in a dispute over pay and the site's future.

The Unite union said more than 350 workers had rejected a pay offer amounting to an annual 2% increase for two years.

It added workers were concerned about the future of the Westfield site after key contractor Marks and Spencer announced distribution network changes.

DHL said it was disappointed staff had voted in favour of industrial action.

A schedule for strike action will be announced "in due course".

Unite said more than 90% of ballot papers returned were in favour of action.

The dispute mainly involves warehouse and logistics staff.

According to the union, more than 100 workers have been made redundant at the site in the last two years - with 15 jobs being lost in the summer following the Marks and Spencer restructuring announcement.

'Untenable'

Unite regional industrial officer Tony Devlin said: "We've got to the point where the situation is untenable.

"This workforce readily accepted a global pay freeze in 2008 and has had to contend with a significant spate of redundancies in the last two years - their commitment to DHL and M&S is unquestionable.

Start Quote

DHL believes its offer to be generous in the current economic climate and is disappointed that staff at Westfield have voted in favour of industrial action”

End Quote DHL statement

"We've accepted the cuts and made proposals for the diversification of the business operation after the M&S announcement but have been continuously kept in the dark by DHL and M&S.

"The recent pay offer was the straw that broke the camel's back."

In a statement, DHL said: "DHL believes its offer to be generous in the current economic climate and is disappointed that staff at Westfield have voted in favour of industrial action.

"We have offered Unite a date for a follow-up meeting and look forward to reaching a satisfactory outcome for both sides at the earliest opportunity."

SNP MSP for Falkirk East, Angus MacDonald, said news of the job losses was "very concerning" for the employees of May Gurney and their families.

He added: "The company has pledged to work with employee representatives and its other clients in an attempt to minimise the number of job losses, and I will be contacting the Scottish government to ask that they lend whatever support is available to the employees affected at this difficult time."

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