BT telecoms staff vote to join UK strikes over pay

(Alliance News) - Staff at telecoms giant BT Group PLC have voted to strike, union bosses ...

Alliance News 30 June, 2022 | 4:31PM
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(Alliance News) - Staff at telecoms giant BT Group PLC have voted to strike, union bosses announced Thursday, joining workers in various UK sectors protesting over pay as decades-high inflation erodes wages.

Dave Ward, general secretary at the Communication Workers Union, said BT now faces its first national strike since the company's privatisation in the 1980s after a ballot in favour of walking out.

It comes after strike action in recent days by tens of thousands of rail workers in addition to stoppages held by senior criminal lawyers.

Elsewhere, the aviation and postal sectors face stoppages, while teachers and workers in the state-run National Health Service mull action.

Union leaders insist strikes are necessary as wages have failed to keep pace with UK inflation, which has soared to a 40-year high and is on course to rise beyond 10%.

"People will not work harder and harder for less and less forever," Ward said in a statement announcing plans for BT workers to strike.

BT expressed disappointment at the vote result, adding that it would work to keep customers connected.

Recruitment firms have meanwhile stepped up their opposition to UK government plans to allow agency staff to replace striking workers, warning they would "inflame" industrial disputes.

Bosses at some of the country's biggest recruitment companies – including Manpower and Adecco – have written to Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng expressing concern over the proposals.

"We strongly believe it has the potential to cost our businesses as we will be held responsible for sending strike-breakers across a picket line and putting our workers in harm's way," said the recent letter released to media Thursday.

"It will not matter if our individual businesses choose not to supply – the industry will be called into disrepute," it added.

Shares in BT closed down 2.9% to 186.10 pence each in London on Thursday.

source: AFP

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
BT Group PLC 157.60 GBX -0.19

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