Freight News, Logistics

‘UPS are like Victorian mill owners’, says union – updated

[ July 29, 2014   //   ]

The Unite trade union is comparing parcels carrier UPS to a Victorian mill owner as it stepped up a ten month campaign to highlight the ‘impossible workloads’ faced by employees. The union has started an intensive leafleting campaign at UPS London depots in late January with demonstrations at Camden, the biggest UPS depot in Europe; the North Feltham trading estate; and at Croydon. The campaign will then be widened out to other UPS depots across the country and the action will form the bedrock for a national strike ballot of the UK’s UPS Parcels workforce.

Unite national officer for road transport and logistics, Matt Draper said members at Camden had faced “impossible and unreasonable workloads, which have been accompanied by a bullying culture by managemen” and feedback from members at other depots across the country point to similar problems.

Draper said that the company forced employees to work beyond normal finishing times, in some cases several hours beyond the 5.00pm finish time, or face disciplinary action.

Management had also disregarded agreements on sick pay and refused to pay workers injured at work. “UPS is day-by-day resembling the mill owners of Victorian times rather than the employer of choice it claims to be,” it said.

In response, a UPS spokesperson said: “Discussions with Unite are on-going, and we remain hopeful that a mutually satisfactory agreement can be reached. People are our greatest resource, and UPS works closely with labour unions around the world.  It is UPS’s policy to comply with all laws governing employment and labour practices worldwide, and UPS is careful to take into account the point-of-view of unions along with the interests of our customers, our employees, our shareholders and our company as a whole.”

The leafleting demos will run from 07.00 to 11.00 on Thursday 31 July in Camden, Monday 4 August at North Feltham Trading Estate, and on Monday 11 August at Croydon.

Tags: ,