Harland & Wolff Group Holdings plc (AIM: HARL), the UK quoted company focused on strategic infrastructure projects and physical asset lifecycle management, provides an update on labour relations at Harland & Wolff (Methil) Limited (Methil).
Hundreds of workers have walked off the job at a fabrication yard in Fife over a dispute surrounding the non-payment of subcontractors, a union has said.
The Company has not yet recognised any trade union at the Methil facility. The Company has made it abundantly clear that it seeks to recognise trade unions and enter into negotiations on the collective bargaining agreement with the workforce, similar to the successful agreement that the Company reached with the trade unions in Harland & Wolff (Belfast) Limited.
Despite the Company stating its position in no uncertain terms, the local representatives of GMB and Unite have unilaterally decided to call a wildcat strike of the workforce in Methil this morning. The Company has sought legal advice and determined that due process has not been followed and, therefore, this strike action is illegal.
The Company remains committed to recognising trade unions and to maintain excellent labour relations. To that extent, it will continue discussions with the local trade union representatives in order to reach a mutually agreed position and commence negotiations on the collective bargaining agreement as quickly as possible. For the avoidance of doubt, wages of the local workforce have been paid on time and will continue to be paid in line with their respective employment contracts.
Harland & Wolff, group CEO John Wood, commented:
“It is most unfortunate that the local representatives of the trade unions have taken this sort of strike action unilaterally. This kind of militant action does not help any party – the Company, the workforce or the client. As a Group that operates across the UK, we believe that trade unions should be recognised and collective bargaining agreements should be negotiated in good faith. However, there is a process to be followed and illegal, unjustified strike action achieves very little except for bringing the Company, the workforce and the wider economy into disrepute and causing unnecessary uncertainties. The Company is engaged in constructive dialogue at all levels with the trade unions and will seek to reach mutual agreement as quickly as possible .”
For further information, please visit www.harland-wolff.com or contact:
Harland & Wolff Group Holdings plc
John Wood, Chief Executive Officer
Seena Shah, Head of Marketing & Communications
+44 (0)20 3900 2122
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