Eddie Stobart drivers in Doncaster are to strike from 6 December after rejecting rejected the firm’s final financial support package, which was proposed after two days of talks facilitated by ACAS.
The drivers, who were transferred from Tesco to Stobart in August, voted against the company’s improved offer, which would have seen them benefit from a 50 per cent increase on their statutory maximum redundancy pay.
The drivers David Pickering, Eddie Stobart managing director, said: “Our proposal was a 50 per cent increase in their statutory redundancy pay which would have seen them benefit from significant financial support so it’s disappointing to see them lose out. I’m sure they will feel let down by their representation from Unite. Had Unite concentrated on negotiations, rather than industrial action, then the drivers would be much better off financially.”
Stobart had offered redundancy pay based on £650 per week of service, but it said that having rejected that deal they would now receive £430 per week redundancy pay.
In addition to the redundancy package, Eddie Stobart and Tesco also made 212 job opportunities available to the affected drivers – 90 warehousing positions and 122 driving jobs.
It said that any driver who takes up one of those alternative roles would receive a financial support package equal to 75 per cent of their redundancy allowance. This offer remains available to drivers until the end of the consultancy period on 5th December 2012.
Unite national officer Adrian Jones said: “The latest offer to settle this long-running dispute was completely unsatisfactory to our members. The drivers face losing their jobs by Christmas and they will be taking continuous strike action from 00.05am on Thursday 6 December.”