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Yodel faces Christmas strike over ‘lump of coal’ pay offer

30 Oct 2020
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Delivery firm faces vote on industrial action over ‘miserly’ pay offer after Covid-19 boom

Parcel carrier Yodel faces industrial action over the Christmas period as angry staff are being balloted for strike action over a pay offer branded ‘insulting’.

They include Yodel drivers who have put themselves at risk to transport Covid-19 samples despite being paid just 11 pence above the minimum wage.

GMB, the union for Yodel workers, begin strike ballots today for depots in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The ballots close at 12 Noon on Friday 13 November, paving the way for industrial action.

An earlier consultative ballot saw 84% of GMB’s more than 1,000 members - who are dissatisfied their hard work throughout the Covid crisis, which includes transporting Covid samples during the pandemic - reject the pay offer amid frustration their hard work has not been rewarded.

Yodel offered a pay increase of 2% from July this year and 1.5% next year. The 2% is only worth 1.6% because Yodel are not back dating the pay increase to April, with members losing out on three months of back pay.

This was overwhelming rejected by Yodel workers.

Yodel drivers can earn just £8.83 - just 11 pence more than the minimum wage, while general workers, sorters and loaders get paid the statutory bare minimum.

GMB members working for Yodel have worked Sundays and Bank Holidays to collect and transport Covid test samples this year despite the risks as part of the Government’s contract with the firm.

Meanwhile, Yodel has announced plans to hire almost 3,000 workers across the country ahead of the Christmas period – and plans to open a Northern distribution ‘hub’.

Gary Carter, GMB National Officer said:

“Yodel has been raking it in during the Covid-19 crisis after online sales soared - but they appear committed to hoarding it.

“The company’s workforce has been delivering volumes for household names at a level normally only seen at Christmas throughout the year and in the most trying of circumstances.

“GMB members working for Yodel have gone above and beyond, including putting themselves at risk of exposure to transport Covid-19 test samples at all hours.

“It’s an insult to be presented with such a miserly pay offer.

“It’s the workforce’s hard graft that has seen Yodel win new business and announce expansion plans, but our members are being presented with a lump of coal rather than a proper pay rise in the run up to Christmas.

“That's some way to reward the workers who have been on the frontline and often putting themselves at risk to deliver for the company.

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