Ordnance Survey staff vote to strike in pay dispute

Union members at UK map-maker Ordnance Survey have voted to strike in protest about pay.

Nearly 80% of Prospect’s 1,000 members at Ordnance Survey voted in favour of the strike, while nearly 83% supported action short of a strike.

Prospect is waiting to hear the results of a ballot of staff represented by its sister union PCS before announcing strike dates, but employees will begin action short of a strike at sites across the country on 19 June.

This will see staff work strictly to their agreed hours and a ban on unpaid overtime, which Ordnance Survey depends on.

The union said the action is in protest at a number of pay issues – in particular a succession of below inflation pay increases, many not consolidated, as well as the lack of a coherent mechanism for all staff to progress to the ‘rate for the job’.

The union has expressed anger that the findings of a joint management and union pay review, which aimed to identify and implement a fair and equitable pay system, have been “ignored”.

The Ordnance Survey has made a final offer of 3.8% in year one, and 3.6% in year two, but the union says this will still leave large numbers of staff receiving consolidated increases below inflation, or making little or no progress.

Prospect negotiator Ben Middleton said: “Despite our members’ best efforts to negotiate a resolution to the pay problems, once again Ordnance Survey has ignored the need to resolve pay and equity anomalies within the system and left staff feeling overlooked and let down.

“This will be the first time staff have taken industrial action in the organisation’s 200-year history and demonstrates the high levels of dissatisfaction among our members.”

An Ordnance Survey spokesman said: “We recognise the strong views reflected in the ballot result but we have to ensure that any pay offer is affordable given market conditions. The ballot does not change the economic background.

“We are disappointed with the outcome of the ballot as we consider our offer to be fair, realistic and affordable.”


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