Unions ac­cept re­vised off­shore work­ers’ deal

The Press and Journal (Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY MARK LAMMEY

Off­shore work­ers have ac­cepted a re­vised con­tract of­fer, fol­low­ing a pro­longed dis­pute over pay and con­di­tions in the North Sea.

Work­ers were vot­ing on a third pay of­fer from the Off­shore Con­trac­tors’ As­so­ci­a­tion (OCA), which rep­re­sents nine em­ploy­ers. The em­ploy­ees turned down a 2% pay rise ear­lier this year, hav­ing al­ready re­jected an of­fer at the end of 2016.

Trade unions had been hold­ing out for bet­ter terms, in­clud­ing a wage in­crease, along with im­proved sick pay and paid travel time for their mem­bers.

Unions then held a se­ries of in­dus­trial ac­tion bal­lots, but they did not gain enough sup­port for a strike.

The OCA sub­se­quently pro­posed a 2% pay in­crease and a £450 lump sum for cer­tain em­ploy­ees.

Last month, the Unite, RMT and GMB trade unions rec­om­mended that their mem­bers ac­cept the re­vised of­fer.

The OCA, whose mem­bers in­clude Amec Fos­ter Wheeler, Petro­fac and Wood Group PSN, wel­comed the de­ci­sion to vote in favour of the new deal.

Its chief ex­ec­u­tive Paul Atkin­son said: “We are re­ally pleased that mem­bers of all three trade unions have cho­sen to en­dorse our pro­posal in a con­sul­ta­tive bal­lot.

“We have worked ex­tremely hard with union of­fi­cials to reach a shared set­tle­ment that we all be­lieve to be in the best in­ter­ests of ev­ery­one in­volved.”

Unite re­gional of­fi­cer Tommy Camp­bell said: “The three unions’ mem­bers have re­luc­tantly ac­cepted the of­fer by a nar­row mar­gin”

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