Fujitsu staff to strike again

Employees at Fujitsu Services will return to strike action after arbitration talks collapse
Written by Colin Barker, Contributor

Staff at Fujitsu Services will go on strike again this week, after the collapse of arbitration talks aimed at ending a long-running dispute between members of the Amicus trade union and management.

At a meeting on Thursday, the staff voted to go ahead with a series of alternate one- and three-day strikes, beginning with a one-day strike on 7 March. There will then be a three-day strike beginning on Monday 12 March, followed by a one-day strike the next week. If the situation isn't resolved by that point, then a three-day strike will begin on Wednesday 28 March.

The dispute between management and staff at the Fujitsu Services facility in Manchester has been running since the end of 2006. The facility is responsible for outsourcing services for a number of organisations, including Marks & Spencer and the Home Office. Staff at the plant have previously held a number of one-day actions and a five-day strike in January.

The dispute revolves around redundancy rights, better pay and union recognition. According to the union it had agreed to shift its stance on one of these issues in an effort to solve the dispute, but the effort was unsuccessful.

One of the sticking points has been Fujitsu's handling of  the union's representative at Fujitsu, Ian Allinson. During the dispute, Fujitsu Services launched disciplinary action against Allinson, before deciding last week that he was not in fact guilty of breaking company regulations as a result of his union activities.

But, according to Amicus, the company has imposed various sanctions anyway, including cutting the amount of time Allinson is allowed to work on union activities.

Fujitsu Services, which has remained silent over the dispute in the past, had not responded to requests for comment at the time of writing.


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