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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 February 2021

Yorkshire aerospace workers strike against pay disparity

Yorkshire aerospace engineers strike February 2021, photo Iain Dalton

Yorkshire aerospace engineers strike February 2021, photo Iain Dalton   (Click to enlarge)

Iain Dalton, Yorkshire Socialist Party

Despite the snowy weather, members of union Unite working on a Babcock Aerospace contract in Yorkshire providing operational and engineering service at RAF Leeming were out on the picket lines on 2 February. This was their third day of strike action as part of an ongoing dispute over shift pay disparity.

Babcock is a subcontractor for BAE Systems, which also provides services at RAF Valley for aircraft such as the Hawk trainer jet, doing similar safety-critical work as RAF Leeming. But workers at RAF Valley receive a shift payment, worth up to 5,000, and more to some workers, which RAF Leeming workers currently don't receive. Such penny-pinching may be part of the reason behind proposals last summer to move depth maintenance of the T1 Hawk to RAF Leeming last summer.

The workers at RAF Leeming are highly skilled, many having worked there for ten to twenty years, with a majority being ex-servicemen who transferred from the RAF side of things, such as logistics, to the civilian side.

But such is the depth of feeling among the workforce that the union has grown in the run-up to this dispute, and strike action has been escalated from selective one-hour strikes during the first two days, combined with an overtime ban, to longer periods and due to go to 48-hour strikes if the company refuses to budge.

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In The Socialist 3 February 2021:


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

Launching a political alternative to cuts, poverty and job losses

Why I am attending the TUSC local elections online conference

South Yorks TUSC ready for electoral fight


What we think

Workers' rights and safety: Trade union mobilisation could force more Tory U-turns


News

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Children in care: Privatisation is not working

Multimillion-pound rental firm demands thousands from homeless asylum seeker

Covid outbreak at Kent asylum detention centre: Napier is not fit for purpose

New anti-protest law: State forces want more power to crush the protests that are coming


Workplace news

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Usdaw Broad Left rally brings together those campaigning for a fighting union

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HMRC: We demand a pay rise without cuts to terms and conditions

Workers fight British Gas 'fire-and-rehire' plans

Vote Steve Hedley for RMT general secretary

The NEU's 'big announcement' - lessons need to be learned

Yorkshire aerospace workers strike against pay disparity

Workplace news in brief


The Communist Manifesto

The Communist Manifesto - A guide to understanding society, and how to change it


Rolls-Royce

1971: Rolls-Royce crisis - when the Tories nationalised in order to secure the interests of British capitalism


Readers' opinion

GameStop: Billionaires hurt at their own game

The Socialist Inbox


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Covid 'vaccine wars' underline failure of capitalist nation states to deal with the global pandemic


Campaigns news

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Why I rejoined the Socialist Party

Help us raise the funds to fuel the working-class fightback

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Stop Labour council's eviction of Stratford Circus arts centre


 

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