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Sun May 19 2024

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Strike threat to Green Deal

21 Sep 12 The government’s flagship Green Deal programme is under threat from industrial action in the sector, the Unite union is warning.

Heating & ventilating engineers have firmly rejected the pay deal proposed by the Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES). They voted nine to one against accepting a two-year offer that included freezing pay for the first year, followed by 1.5% increase for the second year.

Their union, Unite, says that unless B&ES improves the offer there could be industrial action, impacting upon the low carbon energy sector and forthcoming Green Deal work. Thousands of skilled workers could down tools, it says.

Bernard McAulay, Unite national officer for construction, said: “This insulting pay offer has been roundly rejected by our members. The employers are hiding behind the economic climate to try and push through this paltry pay offer.

"We know that the major contractors that make up the Building & Engineering Services Association have healthy profit margins and order books. Last year they attempted to de-skill the industry causing the biggest industrial unrest on sites across the country for a decade.

“After six months the employers had to back-track because of the opposition they felt by thousands of angry skilled workers.

"This pay deal has been received with equal anger and Unite members have made it clear that they want an improved offer."

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