MP's show of solidarity for BT Group staff on strike in Morpeth

Ian Lavery has been to the picket line in Morpeth today to show his support for BT Group workers who are on strike.

By Andrew Coulson
Friday, 29th July 2022, 5:10 pm

Engineers and call centre staff voted in favour of industrial action after BT offered a £1,500 per year pay rise, which is below the current rate of inflation.

One of the picket lines today (Friday) and on Monday is the Telephone Exchange on Newgate Street and workers explained why they are on strike earlier today.

After speaking with the workers on the Morpeth picket line, the MP for Wansbeck told the Northumberland Gazette: “BT and Openreach have made billions in profits while their workers have been offered a pay increase well below the current levels of inflation – resulting in a real terms pay cut.

Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery went along to the Morpeth picket line to show his support for BT Group workers on strike.

“These workers have every right to fight for better pay, terms and conditions and they have my full support. Why should workers stand by and accept a pay cut while the companies they work for accumulate huge profits?

“For too long this Government has facilitated the redistribution of wealth from the poor to the rich. We are told that there is a cost of living crisis, yet companies like Shell, Centrica and Openreach are recording record profits.

“This country needs a pay rise and I fully support these workers fighting for it.”

BT says the flat pay increase of £1,500 per year for all UK staff equates to a rise of around three per cent for workers on top-end salaries, and around eight per cent for those on lower wages.

A company spokesperson added that the rise is “our highest salary increase in more than 20 years”.