19 Days Remaining

Saturday 23rd
posted by Peter Lazenby in Britain

HUNDREDS of lift engineers who are spied on as they travel across Britain doing maintenance work will strike for two weeks, their union said yesterday.

The 300 Unite members, employed by Finnish firm Kone but under British management, are in dispute over the use of “spy in the cab” tracker devices, which they say are notoriously inaccurate in logging workers’ mileage and workloads.

One tracking device logged an engineer as having driven 1,000 miles in a day without refuelling.

The union also says that the tracking devices log inaccurate information on “private” mileage which leads to deductions from wages.

The engineers, who look after lifts and escalators at Heathrow and Gatwick airports, voted 81 per cent for strike action and 91 per cent for action short of a strike. The two-week stoppage will start next Wednesday.

They are already operating a ban on overtime and night call-outs which started on March 27.

Unite has called on Finnish bosses to intervene in the dispute after British managers walked out of talks at conciliation service Acas.

Unite national officer Linda McCulloch said: “Due to this unreasonable behaviour, Unite is calling on the top executives of this Finnish-owned company to intervene and sort out the intransigent stance of their local UK management.

“Already, the Finnish metal workers’ union has put pressure on the company.

“Our members are furious at the way they have been treated and their legitimate concerns ignored. They have no confidence in the UK management.”

The main Kone depots are in Glasgow, Chertsey in Surrey, Gateshead in Tyne and Wear, Keighley in Yorkshire and Warrington in Cheshire.