This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
PICKETS were in action today at a Manchester factory in a dispute over pay.
Polyflor at Whitefields in Manchester produces floor coverings at three sites: in Whitefields, Oldham and Tyneside.
More than 120 Whitefields workers are members of GMB, but the other two sites are not unionised.
Workers at the Whitefields factory rejected a below-inflation pay rise of 2 per cent and are striking for two-hour strikes a week every Wednesday and Thursday.
The management deal has been accepted at the non-unionised factories.
Polyflor GMB representative John Waddington told the Morning Star: “Last year during lockdown there was no increase. The union accepted that but saw it as a deferment.
“We put in a claim for four per cent for 2020/21 and 4 per cent for 2021/22.
“Now the employer has said they are ‘uncomfortable’ talking about a pay rise for last year and that it is ‘inappropriate.’ They wanted to cross last year out and forget about it.”
GMB proposed a compromise two-year deal including a 3 per cent back-dated increase for last year. The company rejected it and the workers voted to strike.
Waddington said that workers at the non-unionised company’s sites are represented by a “forum” comprising of two shop floor workers, two office staff, two managers and a company director.
“Their acceptance of the company’s deal was a diktat,” he said.
The Polyflor strikers have created their own picket-line character “Poly Parrot” wielding a placard stating: “Where’s our pieces of eight!?”
Mr Waddington added: “The company is awash with cash. They have £90 million in the bank and pay out £40m to £50m a year in dividends.”
Polyflor was invited to comment.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £10 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.