GMB Experts in the World of Work
Join GMB today
 Follow @GMB_union

Engineering Construction Protest 7 April

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

GMB Engineering Construction Workers Protest In Scotland, Wales And Yorkshire On 7th April Against Undercutting On Power Station Sites

Unscrupulous construction companies are exploiting non UK workers at rates of pay as low as £7 per hour rather than paying £16.64 per hour under the relevant UK collective agreements says GMB.

Following successful protests across the UK on 1st March 2016, GMB will hold further protests on Thursday 7th April 2016 against the undercutting of workers at three energy-from-waste construction sites. (See notes to editors for previous GMB press releases about undercutting on energy from waste sites).

GMB members will rally against a lack of job opportunities for local workers and the exploitation of non UK workers at energy from waste construction sites run by construction firms Interserve and Babcock & Wilcox Volund (BWV).
 

Skilled workers on these sites are being paid about £7 per hour. BWV has refused to follow the National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry (NAECI) which covers infrastructure like power stations, oil refineries and transport installations. Under that agreement the rate for skilled workers is £16.64 per hour.

The protests will be held at 6.30am and will continue all day at the addresses as follows:

Margam site, off Margam road
Heol Cae'r Bont, SA13 2NR

Dunbar landfill,
Oxwellmains,
Dunbar, EH42 1SW

Templeborough site,
Firth Rixon site Sheffield Road
Rotherham S60 1DP

Phil Whitehurst, GMB national officer for engineering construction, said “GMB members in the Engineering Construction Sector are being debarred from employment on energy from waste (EfW) facilities being built around the UK.

Unscrupulous construction companies using spurious umbrella companies exploit non UK workers at rates of pay as low as £7 per hour rather than paying £16.64 per hour which is the applicable rate through direct employment and utilising UK collective agreements.

This undercutting effectively disadvantages UK construction workers and subsequently GMB members.

GMB and Unite intend to launch a major campaign to get politicians in the UK and the European Union to implement the provisions of social Europe which were intended to go hand in hand with the free movement of labour across the European Union. As things stand we have a total one way street where undercutting of pay is happening on an industrial scale right across the UK. This cannot be allowed to continue.”

Gary Cook, GMB Officer for Engineering workers in Scotland, said. “How can the Government turn a blind eye to the exploitation of these workers who will be paid as little as £6.98, 63% below the recognised national agreement rates for engineering and construction workers? What chance does local skilled labour have at these exploitative rates?

This is yet another glaring example of a missed opportunity to protect what little construction work Scotland has. The government should be sending a message out loud and clear: Scotland is a no go area for exploitation and social dumping and it will not be tolerated at the cost to our skilled workers and young people desperate to get a craft apprenticeship."

Bob McNeill, GMB Regional organiser, said “GMB members have negotiated and honoured the Terms and Conditions of our National Agreement (NAECI) for decades and I support our members’ campaign for the National Agreement to be fully implemented on the Rotherham site.

Interserve and Babcock Wilcox VØlund are undermining our agreement by exploiting non UK workers and paying inferior terms and conditions. This is nothing other than social dumping"

A member of the newly formed Energy Waste Activist Committee said “We are protesting again as Interserve and BWV are still not paying the industry rates and not adhering to our National Agreements . These protests are part of a broader campaign to highlight the exploitation and social dumping that is taking place on Interserve and BWV sites. And the lack of local job opportunities We will not stop our campaign until this injustice is put right and Interserve and BWV Pay the rate “

End

Contact: Bob McNeil 07961 761 806 or Phil Whitehurst on 07968 338810 or Gary Cook on 07712677594 or GMB press office on 07970 863 411 or 07739 182 691

Notes to editors

1 GMB press release dated Thursday, February 25, 2016

GMB Engineering Construction Workers Protest In Scotland, Wales And Yorkshire On 1st March About Undercutting On Power Station Sites

Unscrupulous construction companies are exploiting non UK workers at rates of pay as low as £7 per hour rather than paying £16.64 per hour under the relevant UK collective agreements says GMB.

On Tuesday 1st March GMB members in engineering construction will hold three separate protest demonstrations in Wales, Scotland and Yorkshire against undercutting of workers on three energy from waste power station construction sites.

The client and main contractor on each of the sites are as follows:

The Margam Green Energy Plant, a £160m 40 MW biomass-fired power station under construction near Port Talbot, is owned by Glennmont Partners, on behalf of its dedicated clean energy fund, Glennmont Clean Energy Fund Europe II. Further funding will be provided by Deutsche Bank AG, supported by credit agency Eksport Kredit Fonden.

Viridor, owned by Pennon Group, are constructing a £177m 30 MW energy recovery facility in East Lothian, Scotland.

Templeborough Biomass plant, a £150m 45 MW power station under construction in Rotherham, is owned by Templeborough Biomass power plant ltd.

The main contractor for all three sites is a consortium of Babcock Wilcox VØlund a/s (BWV) and Interserve Construction Ltd. VØlund is part of the Babcock & Wilcox Group, and provides process equipment and maintenance services whilst Interserve (Wales) is undertaking the civil engineering and building.

Skilled workers on these sites are being paid about £7 per hour. BWV has declined to follow National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry (NAECI) which covers infrastructure like power stations, oil refineries and transport installations. Under that agreement the rate for skilled workers is £16.64 per hour.

Under the EU Posted Workers Directive contractors employing labour from third countries are obliged to follow sector agreements like the NAECI agreement but increasingly employers are ignoring this legal requirement.

The details of the protests are as follows:

From 6.30am, Tuesday 1 March
Margam site, off Margam road
Heol Caer Bont, SA13 2NR

From 6.30am, Tuesday 1 March
Dunbar landfill,
Oxwellmains,
Dunbar, EH42 1SW

From 6.30am, Tuesday 1 March
Templeborough site,
First Rixon site Sheffield Road
Rotherham S60 1DP

Bob McNeill, GMB Regional organiser, said “GMB members have negotiated and honoured the Terms and Conditions of our National Agreement (NAECI) for decades and I support our members’ campaign for the National Agreement to be fully implemented on the Rotherham site.

Interserve and Babcock Wilcox VØlund are undermining our agreement by exploiting non UK workers and paying inferior terms and conditions. This is nothing other than social dumping"

Phil Whitehurst, GMB national officer for engineering construction, added “GMB members in the Engineering Construction Sector are being debarred from employment on energy from waste (EfW) facilities being built around the UK.

Unscrupulous construction companies using spurious umbrella companies exploit non UK workers at rates of pay as low as £7 per hour rather than paying £16.64 per hour which is the applicable rate through direct employment and utilising UK collective agreements.

This undercutting effectively disadvantages UK construction workers and subsequently GMB members.

GMB and Unite intend to launch a major campaign to get politicians in the UK and the European Union to implement the provisions of social Europe which were intended to go hand in hand with the free movement of labour across the European Union. As things stand we have a total one way street where undercutting of pay is happening on an industrial scale right across the UK. This cannot be allowed to continue.”
 

End

Share this page
+1