M&S haulier faces strikes over pay dispute

M&S haulier GIST faces strikes at its Hemel Hempstead site (Flickr/EDDIE)

Marks & Spencer’s (M&S’s) London and south-east food haulier, GIST, will face strike action after a dispute over equal pay.

Workers at GIST’s Hemel Hempstead site will stage 12 24-hour strikes, after claims that about 20 workers were being paid £8,000 a year less than other workers for doing the same job, according to the Unite union. The first strike was due to begin on Friday June 30.

The union claimed that more than 100 M&S stores in London and the south-east would be impacted by the strike action. GIST’s Hemel Hempstead site delivers food to M&S stores across London and the south-east. But, M&S said it had contingency plans in place.

Strike action

The strike action will come after the 20 GIST ‘pickers and loaders’ were earning about £22,000 a year, while an estimated 280 other workers at the site were being paid about £30,000 for doing the same work, Unite said.

Unite regional officer Alan Brkljac said: “The kernel of this dispute is that the GIST bosses refuse to recognise our members’ case for ‘equal pay for equal work’. We are calling for the workers affected to be integrated into the national agreement because, at present, they earn about £8,000-a-year less than colleagues doing exactly the same work, at the same site.

“GIST has the contract to supply M&S stores nationally, and should these strikes go-ahead there will be disruption to more than 100 M&S stores in London and the south east at weekends. This dispute could be easily resolved if the 20 plus workers were put on the national agreement, that covers 2,000 GIST employees nationwide.”

Operate as normal

But, M&S said its stores would continue to operate as normal if the strikes went ahead.

An M&S spokeswoman said: “We are working closely with our supplier on this. We have contingency plans in place and, if the strike goes ahead, our Hemel Hempstead distribution centre will continue to operate, and deliveries to stores will continue as usual.”

Unite said the 12 strikes were planned for June 30, July 7, 14, 22, 28, August 4, 11, 18, 25, and September 1, 8 and 15.

Nobody at GIST was available for comment on the planned strike action.


Planned GIST strike dates
  • June 30
  • July 7
  • July 14
  • July 22
  • July 28
  • August 4
  • August 11
  • August 18
  • August 25
  • September 1
  • September 8
  • September 15

Related News

Marks & Spencer plans to cut its food supplier base

Workers voted to strike at Chivas' whisky bottling plant in Kilmalid

Strike planned at Chivas after pay offer rejected

The new agribusiness group aims to represent the view of the agricultural supply chain expertise during the Brexit talks

New agribusiness group to give united Brexit voice

2 Sisters slammed a union protest

2 Sisters slams union protest for ‘untrue’ claims

Workers at Tunnock's recieved an 8.7% pay rise over two years (Flickr/Meaning Conference)

Tunnock’s workers ‘given 8.7% pay rise’

Unite said it would try to save as many jobs as possible at 2 Sisters' Smethwick factory

2 Sisters’ planned 630 job cuts sparks union ‘plan’

2 Sisters confirmed its Smethwick poultry processing site would close at the end of June

2 Sisters’ Smethwick site to close with 250 job losses

Unite called for an urgent meeting with Bakkavor management

Union wants urgent Bakkavor talks over 300 job cuts

Submit a comment

Your comment has been saved

Post a comment

Please note that any information that you supply is protected by our Privacy and Cookie Policy. Access to all documents and request for further information are available to all users at no costs, In order to provide you with this free service, William Reed Business Media SAS does share your information with companies that have content on this site. When you access a document or request further information from this site, your information maybe shared with the owners of that document or information.