Staff at O-I Glassworks in Harlow set to go on strike

Business / Wed 15th Jun 2022 at 08:40am

WORKERS are set to walk out at Harlow glassworks and the quarry supplying the plant in a dispute over pay.

Members of the Unite trade union will take forward strike action at the O-I glassworks on Edinburgh Way as part of a “fight for fair pay”.

More than 160 workers from the union will walk out across three sites, including those from the company’s plant in Edinburgh Way, Harlow.

It comes after hopes to of progress in the pay dispute collapsed last week when the company restated a pay increase offer of four per cent.

The trade union explained the real inflation rate stands at 11.1 per cent while the wider O-I company reported 6.4 per cent higher sales volume and “strong operating performance” in its March quarterly report.

O-I reported a segment operating profit of $231million in the first quarter, compared to $175million in the prior year quarter.

Sharon Graham, Unite general secretary, said: “O-I Glass is another shameful example of a business that can afford to pay a decent wage but won’t pay. The offer on the table is a pay cut, not a rise, and is entirely unacceptable.

“O-I Glass needs to return with an acceptable offer or face strike action by our members, who will have the full support of their union in this fight for fair pay.”

The trade union warned that as a result of the strike action, which could see further dates announced, big name brands could face bottle shortages.

A spokesperson for O-I told the Alloa Advertiser: “We are disappointed that one of the three unions at O-I has notified us that they will take industrial action.

“In a difficult business environment overall, O-I offers well-paid jobs in a critical industry producing the most sustainable rigid packaging.

“In view of increasing energy and raw material costs as well as uncertainty in the energy markets, we have made a very appropriate and reasonable offer to the union.

“We will continue to discuss this matter internally with our labour partners and aim for a constructive solution.”

Tony Devlin, Unite national officer, said their action comes only as a “last resort”.

He added: “This dispute will cause a considerable shortage of bottles for UK drinks companies but this is entirely of O-I Glass’ own making.

“The company has been given every opportunity to make a decent pay offer but it has chosen not to.

“Even at this late stage strike action and the extreme disruption to the company’s customers can still be avoided if O-I Glass make an offer that meets members’ expectations.”

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10 Comments for Staff at O-I Glassworks in Harlow set to go on strike:

Michael Szpakowski
2022-06-15 13:30:30

Good luck to the strikers! Why should workers settle for an effective pay cut? Solidarity to them and I hope they win handsomely.

2022-06-15 17:10:02

Bit strange. Putin invades Ukraine, uk supports Ukraine, all the unions start strike action. Maybe there is a link?

Lewis Hayles
2022-06-15 19:26:35

Where these idiots need to grow up then don't they? What pathetic excuse have they got to go on strike? How pathetic off these idiots. YOU are all a disgrace to harlow!

2022-06-15 20:15:44

Lewis Hayles. Grow up and stop moaning

2022-06-15 20:42:47

To the silly person who is too scared to show his or her name maybe you're the one who needs to grow up don't you think? 1 - Your on your harlow 2 - You've replied to a troll 3 - Maybe it's time you get to be yes? BTW .. This is for the person named ** :) **

Mike Hunt
2022-06-15 21:01:04

MarkD_ I think you need to lower your tone a bit mate. You went a bit strong there.

2022-06-16 08:07:54

Oh are you the coward then? If not off you go mate your not wanted here. Did i mention you no so leave

Micheal Szpakowski
2022-06-16 14:28:34

Mike hunt? You do seemed to have shut your mouth, good listening and btw never come back here again you idiot!

Michael Jackson
2022-06-16 17:57:28

Funny thing is that the other trade unions accept the pay offer and was it not part of a three year deal

Robert Wilson
2022-06-20 20:57:15

Do the workers not understand that inflation hits companies as well as. Employees. 4% is pretty good pay rise in the circumstances. Nearly as bad as the greedy bin men down the road striking over a 7% payrise. Unions trying to hold honest companies to ransom. Let them strike and lose pay. Don't give in to the Union bullying tactics.

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