Tuesday, 2 December 2014

Support the Sharpak Yate Workers

Message from William Quick
(Sharpak Yale is a fish processing plant near Bristol)

Members of the Unite Union working at Sharpak Yate are staging two 24 hour strikes this week over a demand made by management that employees sign a new contract extending the working week by 3 hours (to 40 hours) or be fired.

This outrageous move by management undercuts working conditions and job security (what good is a contract if it can be rewritten at the drop of a hat and demanded that you sign it or be fired) and undermines the very principle of collective bargaining. As Green's we should support the efforts of these workers and their trade union to defend their employment terms and conditions.

The first strike starts today (Tuesday December the 2nd) at 6 am till 6 am tomorrow (Wednesday), with the follow up action commencing at 6 am on Thursday till 6 am on Friday morning

Message of Solidarity

'To the Sharpak Yate Workers,

The Bristol Green Party supports you in your industrial action against Sharpak Yate’s outrageous demand that you sign a new contract extending the working week by 3 hours (to 40 hours) or be fired.  These kinds of intimidation tactics represent some of the worst aspects of employment relations in the UK.  The Green Party believes that good industrial relations depend on the achievement of consensus in the workplace and is committed to workplace democracy (see policy WR430).  We strongly support the rights of workers and their trade unions, and condemn the bullying tactics of your employers. In the UK we are already burdened with the longest average working hours in Europe, contributing to stress, ill-health and diminished family life one the one hand; and unemployment and its attendant ills on the other.  As stated in our Policies for a Sustainable Society, policy WR340:

The Green Party believes that excessive working hours contribute to ill health, stress, lower productivity, lower quality of life and a reduction in quality childcare. We believe that, on average, UK employees currently work too many hours in a working week and a Green government will work towards a reduction in working time in the UK…

And policy WR344:

We are committed in the medium-term to a reduction in working hours to an average of 35 hours per week. The Green Party will enact legislation in order to bring about this change [without loss of earnings].

We wish you the best of luck in resisting this unfair and arrogant attack on your working terms and conditions; and hope your industrial action is brought to a speedy and successful resolution.

the Bristol Green Party'


  1. Sharpak don't just package fish but also mushrooms and chicken... that aside this is an outrageous move by management. Full solidarity to the Sharpak workers!

  2. Anyone know who Sharpak provide packaged food for? It would seem that it is morally wrong to threaten people in this way. It is possibly actionable in EU employment law, so again I ask a question.