Disgruntled Fujitsu Services employees in West Gorton, Manchester are balloting for industrial action, accusing the company of breaking long-standing union recognition and terms for redundancy agreements.
Amicus, the trade union which represents the workers, claimed that the IT services company (formerly ICL) has rejected its claim for sick pay, equal pay and fair pay.
Debbie Brannan, regional officer at the union, said in a statement: "The government's agenda is progressing employees' individual and collective rights in the workplace, including a right to be properly represented, a right to have grievances heard before decisions are made and a right to real consultation before any job losses.
"These are basic rights in the 21st century. It would appear that Fujitsu does not agree as it is trying to undermine Amicus members' use of these rights."
Ian Allinson, the senior Amicus representative, added in a statement: "There is overwhelming support for our pay claim from the workforce. Instead of responding positively to our proposals, the company seems to be trying to get rid of the union."
In May of this year, Amicus members voted two to one in favour of industrial action in an indicative ballot.
At the time, the only issue was the pay claim. But the union now claims that Fujitsu Services has raised the stakes by attacking the union recognition and terms for redundancy agreements.
"People have had enough. Last year we had no pay rise at all. This year the company imposed a pay deal during negotiations, leaving around a third of us with no rise again," said Allinson.
"Many of our members aren't well paid. Nearly half the workforce is in call centres. A third of us are paid below the bottom of the company's own pay scales."
Fujitsu Services said in a statement: "We are aware of the demonstration today by some members of the Amicus trade union outside Fujitsu Services' West Gorton site in Manchester.
"We have talked extensively with Amicus regarding the issues under discussion and have given commitments to work towards solutions."
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