Meat inspectors vote in favour of strike

Meat inspectors have voted for strike action over pay, with up to 130 slaughterhouses across the UK expected to be affected.

According to Unison, inspectors, vets and support staff with the Food Standards Agency have “voted overwhelmingly” in favour of strike action over a long-running pay dispute. Unison is warning the action will affect meat supplies to butchers and supermarkets.

According to the union, 63% of its members voted in favour of action after the FSA announced it would be imposing a 0.75% pay offer.

Dave Prentis, general secretary of Unison, said: “Meat inspectors and vets are a vital link in the food safety chain, protecting the public by keeping contaminated meat off our plates.
“The strike may well clear supermarket shelves and butchers’ shops of meat and threaten summer barbecues. It is down to the FSA to come up with a fair offer instead of digging in their heels and refusing to negotiate.
“Working in slaughterhouses is an extremely messy and stressful job and our members will not accept another cut in the value of their wages. Imposing a pay offer is inflammatory and the result of our strike ballot makes it clear that FSA staff have had enough.”
The union said it was looking for an above-inflation pay rise, which it said would “begin to make up some of the 15% that has been lost from the pay packets of FSA staff under the Coalition Government”.

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