In the dispute, involving 1,000 day workers and 600 men on the night shift at the Washwood Heath factory of Nuffield Metal Products, Ltd., the workers say they are on strike because the management engaged two new workers without first consulting the local office of their trade union.
The two men are both members of the National Union of Vehicle Builders, the unions to which the strikers belong, but the shop stewards are protesting because they were engaged direct instead of through the register of unemployed members maintained by the union. An official of the company said: “We have never followed this practice. When we want labour we go directly to the employment exchanges. The procedure the men are demanding would amount to trade union dictation both to employers and to the employment exchanges.”
After informal talks with the management Mr George Evans, district organizer of the N.U.V.B., said to-night: “The issue at stake is the firm’s future labour requirements. Shop stewards have been seeking discussions with the management on this question for the past three weeks but the management have refused to discuss the matter with them. We must have these discussions before new labour is started. We are resisting the introduction of these men, irrespective of whether they are members of our union or not, until then.”
The Nuffield strike has slopped production of body components for the Morris Minor and may affect the employment of 4,000 workers at the Morris factory at Cowley tomorrow. The company said that production there would continue tomorrow morning, but workers might have to be laid off during the day.
At the factory at Adderley Park, Birmingham, the Morris Commercial Cars production of small trucks was cut today and 420 workers were laid off.