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High-handed BBC managers may provoke Jubilee strike

19 April 2012

The NUJ, Bectu and Unite are balloting their BBC members on strike action and action short of a strike over a "derisory pay award".

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said:

"The NUJ does not accept the implementation of this derisory pay award with no attempt at genuine negotiation.
"It is not just about pay. It is about the BBC's failure to negotiate on a range of issues affecting our members – including the failure of the BBC management to properly implement a re-deployment scheme agreed in the autumn.
"This has left us with members needlessly facing compulsory redundancy. There are jobs these members could go to, but the BBC is failing to fulfil its part of the bargain."

The ballots will begin on 30 April and end on 21 May.

Gerry Morrissey, BECTU's general secretary, said:

"By going over the unions' heads and imposing a 1 per cent pay rise on our members adds injury to the insulting pay offer.
"We now have no option but to call a strike ballot at the earliest opportunity."

Mike Eatwell, Unite's regional officer, said:

"In the middle of a pay negotiation management has chosen to terminate collective bargaining and impose an increase. Unite will oppose any withdrawal of our members' right to bargain on their pay and conditions."
A joint statement from the NUJ, BECTU and Unite, said: "Union members had already voiced frustration at the BBC's refusal to negotiate on their 2012 pay claim. Only one meeting has been held in which management tabled a 'final' offer of 1 per cent, subject to a minimum increase of £400, to officials from BECTU, the NUJ and Unite.
"The unions' claim, submitted in January, sought a pay increase of 2 per cent above inflation, with a minimum increase of £1,000. Staff salaries have fallen 8 per cent behind inflation since 2007.
"The unions believe the BBC's difficulties has been made worse by senior management's agreement with the government to freeze the licence fee which has led to the threat of 2,000 job losses and cuts to staff terms and conditions."

Tags: , bbc, broadcasting, Unite, BECTU, collective bargaining