BT Staff to Vote on Strike

9:30 AM -- BT hasn't increased its 2 percent pay increase offer to its staff, heralding a strike vote by the 55,000 staffers that are members of the Communication Workers Union, reports the BBC.

The news comes only days after BT announced that its CEO had pocketed a £1.2 million (US$1.7 million) bonus for the most recent financial year, when it reported lower revenues but returned to profitability. (See Fat Cat Furor and BT Ramps FTTx Plans, Turns a Profit.)

The prospect of a strike is giving some of the more scare-mongering members of the British press the opportunity to herald a breakdown in British communications capabilities -- for example, this effort from the Daily Telegraph: BT strike action could leave thousands without phone lines.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Industrial Relations Editor, Light Reading

Iknownothing 12/5/2012 | 4:33:16 PM
re: BT Staff to Vote on Strike

BT's first strike in 23 years - this comes as a bit of a suprise, I thought those Union Dinosaurs were now extinct....

Sorry but I've been in this industry for years, never part of a Union, and if I'm not happy with my pay deal then I find another job.  I don't winge like a toddler and stamp feet.

In any case they are squabbling over 3% per annum.  Take 3% of the average salary, divide by 12 and knock off tax etc, and you don't even have enough left to pay a month Sky subscription - hope it's worth all the effort.  

digits 12/5/2012 | 4:33:09 PM
re: BT Staff to Vote on Strike

You should be in management, if you aren't already.

I'm also guessing that you have qualifications and employment options.

"If I'm not happy with my pay deal then I find another job."

That's great for you - honestly. But simply not an option, especially in the current UK employment market, for many of BT's CWA members, who rely on an organized labor body to represent their interests.

And as for your take-home pay maths, it's short-sighted and rather condescending. 

But thanks for the message post. It would be a dull world if we all agreed on everything, wouldn't it?

digits 12/5/2012 | 4:33:05 PM
re: BT Staff to Vote on Strike

BT looks like it is keen to find an agreeable middle ground, and has made a revised offer. See the Reuters story below:



telecomtails 12/5/2012 | 4:32:51 PM
re: BT Staff to Vote on Strike

You are right Ray... the point of organised labour is to stand up collectively for the rights of those who lack power individually.

Some people will always have more power than others - and many of them have earned that power through hard work, talent and commitment.  Others are called professional footballers.

Unfortunately, the largely unskilled, but usually hard working and committed majority of the great British workforce do need to fight for the 3 per cent here and their minium wage there...

It's actually part of what makes us a civilised nation.  That and brown beer served at room temperature.  

R0b355 12/5/2012 | 4:32:33 PM
re: BT Staff to Vote on Strike

So other than the original quote there has been nothing constructive said. At least the original poster said the BT staff are skilled valued workers that if they do not like their pay, go and get a new job. If you are good enough you will be employed, if you are not then you do not deserve a pay rise anyway. As for the Unions, lets get real, they have no interest in the members, they simply want to try and make noise to show they are still important. Just like in the BA dispute there is nothing to be answered by the employer. This country is becoming more like France every day. Thank God we have a new PM that will hopefully put the Union trouble makers back in their hole.

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