BT is facing the prospect of industrial action from nearly 60,000 staff over its “insulting attitude to pay”.
The Communication Workers Union (CWU), which represents more than half of BT’s workforce, today voted unanimously to hold a strike ballot as the current standoff over pay continues.
The vote came shortly after the publication of BT’s annual report, which revealed that BT chief executive Ian Livingston is in line for a six per cent pay rise this year.
This compares to the two per cent rise BT has offered staff.
CWU has already rejected that offer and is pushing for a five per cent rise.
Andy Kerr, CWU deputy general secretary, said the union would serve formal legal notice to BT of its intention to ballot all members for industrial action should it not revise its pay offer by 4 June.
Kerr said: “With a pay-freeze last year and inflation now running at 5.3 per cent BT's attitude to pay is insulting and the staff deserve more.
“Strike action is clearly a last-resort. We've not had a national strike in BT since 1987 so this is not something we take lightly.”
Kerr also said that CWU’s claim would account for just a fraction of BT’s profits last year. Last year the telecoms giant saw EBITDA rise by six per cent to £5.78bn while cash flow rose by 162 per cent.
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