British Gas has offered workers the opportunity to hold negotiations at conciliation service Acas on Wednesday and Thursday to end a dispute over pensions.
The announcement follows yesterday’s strike by 6,000 British Gas engineers, who are protesting against the company’s decision to close the final salary pension scheme to new employees.
The GMB union, representing the engineers, has demanded that the company suspends the closure of the scheme to new entrants for a year while the system is re-evaluated.
Brian Strutton, GMB national secretary, welcomed the prospect of Acas talks.
“This could be the breakthrough GMB has been looking for,” he said. “GMB is suspending the industrial action for the rest of this week to allow Acas talks to take place.
“However, next Monday’s planned 24-hour strike remains in place should the Acas talks fail. I hope that won’t be necessary.”