GMB Shop Stewards In DHL Express Parcels Vote For Strike Ballot Over Proposal To Sack Up To 3000 Permanent Staff And Replace Them With 2,500 Casual Staff
5,000 GMB members in DHL at 102 locations in UK to be asked to vote on official strike action in express parcels division 5,000 GMB members employed at 102 locations in DHL Express in the UK are to be balloted by the union over proposals to sack up to 3,000 permanent staff and replace them with 2,500 casual staff. See note I for the UK locations.
The decision to move to an official strike ballot in DHL Express parcels division was made today in Manchester by shop stewards representing GMB
members in DHL. These members pick up packages from customers, transport them to the hub depots, sort them and transport them to local centres, and deliver them to commercial or domestic recipients within a specified time period. The final link in the delivery chain from local centres to
commercial or domestic premises is undertaken by 2,800 permanent courier staff driving the red and yellow DHL vans. As part of a 3 year pay offer DHL wants to make about 70% of these staff redundant and replace them with casual staff whose only remuneration will be 62p per package delivered. The company also want to close 20 of the 85 local depots and close 4 out of 5 hub centres. In total up to 3000 permanent staff face redundancy as part of a reorganization of the network into business to business deliveries and business to domestic deliveries. These jobs cuts are part of a pay offer for a 3 year deal which was unanimously rejected by the shop stewards today. The deal involved pay rises of 1.9% in year one, 2.5% in year two and 2.5% in year three. The
deal also involved consolidation of bonuses. The anniversary date was 1st April 2006. Mick Rix, GMB Executive Officer for GMB members at DHL said: “DHL are proposing a rapid return to Victorian mill owner values, where our members will be thrown to the wolves of the dole queue, whilst casual non contracted workers will be brought into do the jobs of our members. GMB will not tolerate our members being treated in this abhorrent and Victorian fashion in this day and age. The company plan to transfer the risks in the final link of the delivery chain from the company to the worker. The internet companies are trying to get the final stage of delivery done on the cheap. GMB wants the proposals withdrawn. DHL Express’s race to the bottom, by sacking a well trained and trusted workforce, will inevitably bring the whole company future viability into question. The company is playing Russian roulette with its short and long term future. If GMB members have to take strike action to protect their jobs and the company’s long term viability we believe that customers will support their actions. GMB is convinced DHL customers will want their packages handled by secure, reliable and trustworthy staff. Last year DHL had to pay over £3m in claims and compensation because of thefts of valuables and packages that suddenly disappeared where it was already employing agency and casual staff.“ Dave Prentis, General Secretary of UNISON, said: “I am appalled to hear how DHL are treating their staff – GMB members. These disgraceful employment practices belong in the 19th century. There can be no place for casualisation and UNISON joins the GMB in demanding that these proposals are withdrawn. How can the Government continue with the sale of NHS Logistics to a company that can do this to their own workforce? NHS Logistics is a not for profit, award winning service and staff are proud to be part of the NHS. They should not be parcelled off to DHL, where their jobs and livelihoods will be put in jeopardy. We are told by Ministers about the so-called protection agreement for our staff. No agreement has been reached and the developments in the rest of DHL fill us with dismay and concern for our members.”
Contact: Mick Rix 07971 268 343 or Press office Steve Pryle 07921 289880
or Rosie Conroy 07974 251 823
Notes to Editors:
1 DHL have depots at the following locations: Aberdeen
Aberystwyth, Andover, Anglesley, Ashton Under Lyne, Basildon, Basingstoke, Bath, Belfast , Brentwood, Birmingham ,Brighton. Bristol , Canterbury, Cambridge, Chessington, Capel Hendre Dyfed, Cardiff, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Colchester, Coventry, Coalville, Croydon , Cumbernauld, Dartford, Derby, Dumfries, Dundee, Eastleigh, East Midlands, Edinburgh , Elstree, Enfield, Exeter , Flint , Gatwick , Gibraltar , Galasheils, Glasgow, Guernsey , Gloucester, Goole, Hailsham, Hatfield, Harlow , Hawick, Heathrow , Hemel Hempstead, Hereford, High Wycombe, Horndean, Hull, Inverness , Ipswich , Isle of Man, Jersey, Kendal, Keighley Kilmarnock, Kings Lyn, Launceton, Leeds, Liverpool , Leicester, Litchfield, Lincoln, Llandudno, London Hounslow, Park
Royal, Vauxhall, London Colney, Loughborough, Londonderry, Maidstone, Mansfield, Milton Keynes, Manchester, Mossend Lanarkshire, Newbury, Newcastle, Newport, Northampton, Norwich, Omagh, Oxford, Peterborough, Plymouth, Poole, Preston, Rainham, Reading,
Redhill, Risley, Sandwell, Scarborough, Sheffield, Southampton, Stoke on Trent, Swindon, Taunton, Teesside, Telford, Tewkesbury, Truro,
Wakefield, Winsford, Wrexham, Yeovil and York For the addresses of these locations, check the website: www.dhl.co.uk
2 The express parcel delivery sector
There are 5 large operators in the logistics/ express parcels sector in the UK
A) DHL is the largest company employing in the UK owned by German based Deutsche Post. Deutsche Post World Net is 57% owned by the German Government. It employs 500,000 people worlwide. It provides express delivery and logistics services as two of its four operating divisions using the DHL brand. This includes the Exel businesses it took over. It operates in 220 countries.
B) Geo Post owned by France Postal Service is second largest in the UK.
C) Parcelforce owned by Royal Mail and D )TNT owned by the former Dutch post office are about the same size and are joint 3rd.
E) US owned UPS operating under Lynx brand is next. About 75% of packages are delivered from one commercial outlet to another commercial outlet. 60 million packages or a quarter of the total per year are delivered to homes. This latter segment is up by one third in the past few years because of internet shopping. It is expected to carry on growing at 7% per year. The network required to operate this complex delivery web requires the big five to operate out of 300 service centres throughout the UK and the big 5 accounts for around 25,000 jobs in total.