Industrial Action a Step Closer in North Sea As Unions Reject Wood Group Cuts
Published in Oil Industry News on Friday, 6 May 2016
Oil and Gas People has learned that UNITE and GMB representatives met with Wood Group management today to discuss the proposed changes to pay and conditions proposed by the company last month.
The changes involved a number of job and wage cuts to Wood Group employees on Shell platforms in the North Sea. The talks come the day after Wood Group announced a 3-year extension to their Shell contract securing 500 jobs. That contract win seems to have been at the cost of the workforce as Wood Group now plans the 3rd round of Consultations.
Commenting on todays meeting, John Boland of Unite said:
“The unions (Unite and GMB) met today with Wood Group management to discuss their proposal for large scale redundancies, and to cut wages and terms and conditions on the Shell assets (Brent Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Curlew, Gannet, Nelson and Shearwater). We made it very clear that this proposal was not acceptable to our members, and that if implemented would lead to a dispute situation.
“Woodgroup management are now going to discuss their proposal with their client Shell. We expect further meetings next week.”
The meeting comes a day after Wood Group sent a controversial message to all staff warning that they faced disciplinary and/or legal action if they took to social media to vent frustrations about the company. The business bulletin said:
“Over the past few months we have been disappointed to see confidential corporate communications being posted on social media and defamatory comments linked to the company, shared on public forums.
“Communicating on social media or any other public forum to criticise the company is not acceptable and we will consider pursuing disciplinary action. Any employee who makes a defamatory statement about the company, or any of its employees or directors or commits any other malicious act, may also find themselves subject to legal proceedings.”
Reacting to Wood Groups message to staff, John Boland of Unite said:
“It seems that Wood Group are doing everything possible to alienate their own workforce. They are playing a dangerous game with peoples livelihoods that we will fight, using all resources available to us”
Oil and Gas People understands that the Unions will now move towards a ballot for industrial action.
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