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UK: Coca-Cola Enterprises workers to strike

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Workers at a Coca-Cola Enterprises plant in the UK are to go on strike this week over a pay dispute with the soft drinks bottler.

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Staff at Coca-Cola Enterprises' Edmonton plant in London will stage two six-hour strikes over a 24-hour period on Wednesday (8 September), the Unite trade union said late last week. It said that all 110 workers at the plant will down tools in protest at the bottler's offer of a 2% pay rise, which is below inflation.

Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) told just-drinks today (6 September) that it was confident of maintaining drinks supplies. "CCE has plans in place to ensure that any industrial action does not disrupt the high quality of service we always aim to deliver for our customers," said the bottler.

"We are extremely disappointed in Unite's actions and we believe that the pay offer made in the current climate is fair," said the firm. "We remain open to continuing a dialogue with all our employees and with the unions in an effort to reach a constructive outcome."

Inflation in the UK has been hovering between 3% and 5%, which has led to Unite accusing CCE of proposing a real terms pay cut.

"This company is not suffering during the recession so it is immoral for Coca-Cola to use the climate of austerity to foist a pay cut on its workforce," said Unite's regional officer, Wayne King.


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