Freight News, Sea

Scots port workers walk out – updated

[ March 14, 2016   //   ]

Port workers at Grangemouth in Scotland have launched a two-week strike – and indefinite overtime ban – over shift changes.

Workers at Forth Ports-owned Grangemouth say the changes will affect pay by up to £1,800 a year. Unite regional officer Sandy Smart said: “We are on the verge of a prolonged strike action at Scotland’s biggest port because of Forth Ports’ draconian approach to employment relations.”

A spokesman for the Port of Grangemouth said: “The strike action at the Port of Grangemouth proposed by Unite the union is unjustified.

“We are proposing alterations to shift patterns in response to the changing needs of our customers, whose vessels call at the port seven days a week. Our staff and their union accepted the need for such flexibility, and that shift patterns may require to change in the future, when this element of their employment contracts was agreed in 2011.

“With regret, as a consequence of the proposed strike, we have decided to close the port’s quayside container operations from midnight on Monday 14 March as this strike action would prevent us from being able to serve the needs of our customers efficiently. All other operations at the port will remain open.

“We sincerely hope that our staff, and their union, will cancel this strike and work with us to implement the changes necessary to enable the Port of Grangemouth to meet the changing demands of our customers.”

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