22 October 2004
24 hour strike threatened by airline catering workers
Service and Food Workers Union (SFWU) and Engineers Union (EPMU) members at LSG Skychefs will strike again in an attempt to get their boss to the table in a dispute over over-time rates and a fair pay-increase.
Union members have voted to hold a 24-hour overtime ban followed by a 24-hour strike on November 4th and 5th. Pickets will be held outside LSG Auckland to gather public support for the striking workers and to highlight their cause to the travelling public. Passing motorists have been very supportive of previous pickets at the airport site and the workers expect to have a noisy, exciting picket to show that they are serious about a fair deal.
This action follows 8 hours of rolling strikes where workers walked off the job in protest at the unfair pay offer and LSG managements’ inability to discuss overtime rates.
In the week that workers held a series of rolling strikes the company continued to refuse to agree to mediation without conditions.
Since delivery of the latest strike notification the SFWU has been notified that the company wishes to meet in meditation next week.
“What these workers are asking for is not a huge increase, our members in other industries are getting 3-4% pay increases and this is not going to cripple a big player like LSG. We have come up with a range of options around the overtime claim, but LSG has refused to discuss it at all. That’s not fair and reasonable.” said SFWU national secretary Darien Fenton.
“Over 400 workers for this company have stood in the freezing wind and rain, lost income and yelled themselves hoarse over this issue. They are very serious and they are committed to getting respect from their bosses and a fair deal.” Ms Fenton said
“We will be out on the picket lines again if LSG does not look hard at their position and come back with an improved offer. We know that this action disrupts their business, but their lack of a decent wage offer affects the lives of our members and their families so these workers have to show that they are serious about demanding a fair deal.” she said.