A DEAL has been agreed in a long-running dispute involving engineering construction workers which led to a series of wildcat strikes at power stations and other sites, it was announced today.
Unite said its members had voted to accept an offer from the Engineering Construction Employers Association on a new national agreement which the union said should bring stability to the industry.
Unite recommended the new deal, which it said would address many of the grievances workers had recently experienced, including the recruitment of local labour.
Unofficial strikes started earlier this year at the Lindsey oil refinery in North Lincolnshire and spread to sites across the country after workers complained they were not being given the chance to apply for jobs.
Unite said today that the agreement would address the "lack of transparency" surrounding tendering for contracts it believed had allowed migrant workers to be exploited.
There are now provisions for trade unions to ensure that any overseas contractors comply with the agreement, said Unite.
Assistant general secretary Les Bayliss said: "We are pleased that our members have accepted the deal, which we believe provides an opportunity for stability in an industry which has been plagued by unrest, thanks to certain unscrupulous employers.
"With a significant number of new build projects on the horizon, the construction industry is hugely important to the UK economy and will help bring the UK out of recession.
"Unite will be working closely with employers to ensure that the agreement is implemented."
Tom Hardacre, Unite’s national officer for construction, said: "It’s in everyone’s interest to make the new agreement work. We want to move forward in a positive way to ensure that there is fairness and access for all workers in the engineering construction sector."