by Thomas Duncan
UNITE general secretary Len McCluskey has addressed striking workers at the Faslane and Coulport naval bases in a show of solidarity.
Unite members voted 96% in favour to hold a three-month strike at Faslane, which will significantly affect nuclear operational and waterfront services.
Employees are complaining that employer Babcock Marine Services is outsourcing parts of employees’ jobs to private companies and refuses to engage with staff representatives.
Babcock deny these allegations ahead of a meeting with arbitrator ACAS.
Despite the disruption there is said to be no risk to safety and security at the base, with cover arranged for all shifts to prevent any accidents.
Unite regional officer Stephen Deans believes workers should be taken seriously.
He said: “In the first instance they’re demanding respect. Respect as employees and respect for their elected representatives who want to work with the company [Babock] on every issue that affects their terms and conditions and the security of their employment, and the serivce provided at the base.
“To do that they’re asking the company to adhere to the existing processes they signed up to along with Unite representatives.”