UK: Union to ballot Tesco workers on national strike
The UK's Transport and General Workers' union (T&G) has called for a nationwide ballot over industrial action against Tesco, the country's largest supermarket group.
T&G told just-food today (29 May) that following the success of the three-day strike staged at Tesco's Livingstone depot this weekend, it will ballot its 5,500 members who work at Tesco depots across the UK.
The Livingstone strike blocked 75% of normal deliveries to Tesco's Scottish stores, the T&G claimed.
"We have been told by very good sources that only 25% of normal loads are going out and there has been a 70% reduction in order picking," Tony Trench, T&G section of Unite regional industrial organiser said. Public support for the drivers was also very encouraging, he added.
"Tesco are being hit by the Livingston strike and in denial about what it is all about," Ron Webb, T&G section of Unite national secretary for transport, added. "We will start the national ballot unless the company commits to meaningful talks with us."
However, Tesco has played down the impact that the Livingstone strike had on store operations. "Our Scottish stores continued to operate as normal over the bank holiday weekend," a spokesperson for the company told just-food. "Only 10% of our staff are members of the union, so the suggestion that a national strike would result in empty shelves is questionable."
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