Naval Base Civilian Staff Halt Industrial Action After Deal Agreed

A civilian strike at the Faslane and Coulport naval bases has been called off after the latest talks between management and unions.

Industrial action at the Scottish bases started on March 24 with members of the Unite union - who work in roles involving radiation monitoring, weapons support, cleaning, logistics, maintenance and repairs - taking part in an overtime ban and a series of staggered strikes.

The union claimed there was a campaign to undermine workers' rights and outsource work by employer Babcock Marine, which refuted the allegations.

But talks involving Unite general secretary Len McCluskey and senior executives from Babcock Marine in London this week have led to an accord.

The agreement acknowledges there has been a ''breakdown in the relationship'' between management and the union and makes a series of proposals to resolve the problems.

The accord is to be put to a meeting of Unite members on April 18 with a recommendation from shop stewards that it should be accepted.

Mr McCluskey said: ''We had constructive talks with Babcock Marine executives and are pleased that we have come to this accord.

''Without the goodwill, hard work and determination of the workers on the ground, no company can be a success. And the best employers are the ones who see workers and unions as partners for progress.

''Workers need to have a real say, and have the rights of their democratic organisations recognised and respected.''

Unite regional officer Stephen Deans said: ''Our members at Coulport and Faslane have a real commitment to their work supporting the Royal Navy. The suspension of their industrial action is another sign of their goodwill.

''As always, it's our members who will make the final decision on whether this accord goes far enough in meeting their concerns, but Unite believes it is a solid foundation to build a better partnership in the future.''

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