More strikes at Fujitsu as ‘pay and pensions’ dispute hots up

Unite members working for the IT giant Fujitsu will strike for a further four days at sites across the UK in their long-running dispute over plans to axe one in five jobs and pension cuts.

Workers at Manchester, Basingstoke, Belfast, Birmingham, Bracknell, Crewe, Edinburgh, London, Stevenage, Wakefield and Warrington will strike for 24 hours from 00.01 on Thursday (April 13) and Monday, April 24.

The dispute centres on pay, pensions, job security and union recognition – and takes place against a background of Fujitsu’s plans to axe and offshore 1,800 jobs in the UK.

Fujitsu is highly profitable in the UK, making £85.6m profit in the last financial year. Unite argues that an ill-considered move to cut and offshore jobs jeopardises the viability of the existing business and runs contrary to its image as a ‘responsible business’.

The previous four days of strikes took place on 28 February and 17, 24 and 27 March, generating strong support and hitting services to customers.

Unite national officer Ian Tonks said: “The previous four days of strike action generated strong support from workers determined to stand up for their jobs and livelihoods.

“The way Fujitsu is treating its workforce and keeping them in the dark over its plans for the future is beyond contempt.

“This is a workforce that has worked hard to make Fujitsu in the UK highly profitable, yet their reward is job cuts and pension reductions, while the company frustrates Unite’s attempts to minimise compulsory redundancies.

“Fujitsu needs to start seriously engaging with Unite to avoid further industrial action, which could stretch into the summer.

“It is in danger of suffering severe reputational damage and will no longer be able to masquerade as a ‘responsible business’.”

Fujitsu declined to comment.