Liverpool dock strikes end after union secures inflation-busting deal

The Liverpool2 container terminal

Port workers in Liverpool have voted to accept an inflation-busting deal from their employer, ending weeks of industrial action at the container base.

Unite the Union says the Peel Ports final package is worth between 14.3% and 18.5%, according to job grades.

At a mass meeting at the docks yesterday (November 10), around 600 workers voted overwhelmingly in favour of the deal, which was negotiated earlier this week.

It brings to an end a period of stoppages at the port that began on September 19. The dock workers will now resume normal work duties.

Unite general secretary, Sharon Graham, said: “This is a highly significant victory for the Unite members on Liverpool docks.

“The determined resolve of our members on the picket line and Unite’s strikes-plus strategy has forced the company to see sense and do the right thing.

“Make no mistake – Unite will continue to fight for jobs, pay and conditions and defend workers relentlessly.”

Unite national officer, Bobby Morton, said: “The hard work and solidarity of our members and reps at Peel Ports, combined with the union’s strategic tactics, has paid off.”

A statement from the Port of Liverpool said the pay deal was worth an increase in basic pay of nine per cent.

It said, in addition, an agreement has been reached to implement a new pay structure for port operators that will complement Peel Ports’ commitment to the development and upskilling of these employees. This, along with an increase to night shift allowance, enhances the pay deal by a further 0.2%-4.5%.

Peel Ports chief operating officer, David Huck, said: “We are delighted to have closed the pay deal with Unite the Union and look forward to continuing to work in partnership with focus on the future.

“We thank our key customers across the supply chain for their support and patience during a challenging period for them, as well as our employees and the wider business.

“We have invested £1.2bn over the last decade, helping Liverpool to proudly reclaim its position as one of the UK’s most important port operations and the busiest transatlantic port in Britain.”

Peel Ports Group said it remains committed to continually developing the Port of Liverpool operation, enhancing the skills of its workforce and helping to ensure it remains at the leading edge to benefit its staff, customers and the local community.

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