Union-member lorry drivers receive “significant” pay rises at several companies

Several lorry drivers around the country have managed to negotiate higher salaries and better working conditions through the Unite trade union. DHL truck drivers at Sainsbury Dartford have secured a 6% pay rise; while GXO drivers have netted a 23% pay increase. Finally, Heinz drivers in Wigan will see their earnings increase by over 25%. Some drivers will even receive a 36% raise, an extra 5 days of holidays and 6 months paid sick leave.

Union-member lorry drivers receive “significant” pay rises at several companies
Photo credit @ DHL

Over the last 48 hours, Unite has published several announcements about pay increases for lorry drivers around the UK. For starters, the organisation has secured a “significant” pay rise for more than 200 DHL lorry drivers employed at the Sainsbury’s regional distribution centre in Dartford. The increase, worth 6.2%, equates to at least £2,200 a year.

The agreement comes after the drivers indicated their willingness to strike over pay during a consultative ballot held in August.

Pay rise for GXO drivers and warehouse workers

Unite also negotiated an inflation-busting pay increase for 350 drivers and warehouse staff working for drinks logistics giant GXO. Lorry drivers’ pay will be increased by up to 23%, while warehouse staff will get a 10% pay rise . The 15-month deal runs until 1 January 2023.

The sites covered in the agreement include Coventry, Derby, Hams Hall (Warwickshire), Livingston, Minworth (West Midlands), Newton Heath (Manchester), Thatcham (Berkshire) and Wakefield.

Two-tier workforce ended on Heinz distribution contract in Wigan, with workers securing pay increases

Unite also managed to end the two-tier workforce on the Heinz distribution contract in Wigan, resulting in many drivers seeing their earnings increase by over 25%.

The agreement covers 26 drivers employed by distribution company Wincanton on the outsourced Heinz contract.

By ending the two-tier workforce, the drivers on the contract who are currently on so-called ‘second generation contracts’ will see their pay increase by between 25 – 36%.

Unite says employers across the distribution and road haulage industry have increasingly used second and even third generation contracts, where new recruits are on lower pay and poorer conditions than existing drivers, to force down costs and so creating a race to the bottom.

Unite believes the widespread use of so-called ‘second generation contracts’ is a significant factor in the current shortage of HGV drivers.

In addition, the workers will receive an additional five days holiday a year and the entire workforce will be entitled to sick pay equivalent to six months full pay and then six months half pay.

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