British Gas workers are burning the new contracts to show graphically their defiance of the imposition of hourly pay 15% below the agreed rate, says GMB Union
Day six of the British Gas strike was ‘rock solid’ as an estimated 7,000 workers downed tools over the company’s plan to sack them all.
Meanwhile angry engineers across the country are set to burn new contracts – which they have been told they must sign, or be fired in March.
Members across the country - picketing at their vans due to the pandemic - will be filming and photographing their contracts being burned at the same time.
British Gas engineers and staff voted overwhelmingly by 89% to strike after boss of parent company Centrica Chris O’Shea threatened to fire them all if they didn’t “accept” cuts to pay and terms and conditions.
The strikes provoked by the company have caused massive disruption already – with an estimated 100,000 homes waiting for service across the country.
British Gas parent company Centrica reported an operating profit of £901 million in 2019.
The operating profitability of its UK home heating business rose by 27 per cent in the first six months of 2020.
Engineers and other workers will also down tools on January 22, 25, 29, 30, 31 and February 1 in anger as profitable British Gas provokes further disruption for its customers.
Justin Bowden, GMB National Secretary, said:
“GMB members at British Gas are burning the new contracts to show graphically their defiance of the imposition of hourly pay 15% below the agreed rate - as well as other changes.
“This is yet another attempt get through to Mr O’Shea that staff accepting cuts of this magnitude in a profitable company is wishful thinking in the extreme.
“British Gas has provoked disruption to more than 100,000 households already in the backlog for services. That number will grow due to the seven new strike dates.
“The company needs to put customers and staff first by abandoning wishful thinking and taking ‘fire and rehire’ off the table.
Join us in sending a message of support to GMB members facing the prospect of having new contracts imposed on them.