Clifford Webb writes
British Leyland’s unofficial combined shop stewards committee yesterday called for immediate action to put threshold pay claims into official procedure at all the group’s 59 United Kingdom factories. This is the first action in support of cost-of living payments by BLMC manual workers.
The shop stewards, who were meeting in Birmingham, announced that if the claims were rejected they would press for national officials of their unions to meet all BLMC conveners to consider what industrial action should be taken to further their claim. But there were indications that the combined shop stewards were by no means united in this action.
Mr Dick Etheridge, joint chairman of the committee and the engineering union’s chief convener at Longbridge, said: “We do not see threshold arrangements as the real solution to the problem. An extra £2 a week may make a deal of difference to someone on the minimum wage, but that does not apply to most car workers. We should do much better to concentrate on the annual wage reviews now coming up and get something substantial added to the basic rate”.