BT staff in Fife join national strike in on-going pay dispute

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BT staff in Fife have joined a nationwide strike in the latest step in an on-going dispute with the telecoms giant.

It was the second day of action this month, with a third to follow on Monday (October 24).

Workers formed a picket line at the BT base in Hayfield Industrial Estate, Kirkcaldy - the only one in Fife.

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The first national industrial action in BT Group for three and a half decades started in July as members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) walked out.

BT staff staged a picket line outside the Kirkcaldy depotBT staff staged a picket line outside the Kirkcaldy depot
BT staff staged a picket line outside the Kirkcaldy depot

The action was triggered by what the union said was BT’s unilateral imposition of real-terms pay cuts for all CWU-represented grades. The dispute involves more than 40,000 CWU members working for BT and Openreach.

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The union said the company’;approach to its annual pay review “represented a radical departure by management” and blamed BT for halting talks and imposing the pay rise on staff.

from the time-honoured partnership approach to industrial relations that had previously

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BT Group said the offer represented an increase of around 5% on average which rose to 8% for the lowest paid and was the highest pay rise in more than 20 years.

A union spokesman said: “These are the same workers who kept the country connected during the pandemic. Without CWU members, there would have been no home-working revolution, and vital technical infrastructure may have malfunctioned or been broken when our country most needed it."

A spokesman for BT said: "We have made the best pay award we could and we are in constant discussions with the CWU to find a way forward from here."