30 July 2015
A victory for a union rep, after he is reinstated by his employer.
Unite shop steward Graeme Boxall, a subcontracted construction worker, was immediately dismissed after requesting direct employment for the electricians he represents at Morgan Stanley HQ in Canary Wharf.
The contractor, Phoenix, had employed electricians through sub-contractor D&D. A signatory to the Joint Industry Board (JIB), which states that a worker seeking to move onto direct employment is entitled to do so, the contractor was breaking the national collective agreement.
Boxall’s dismissal sparked a picket line, which in turn led to negotiations between Unite and Managing Director of Phoenix Lee Crompton. Boxall was reinstated, and negotiations on the direct employment issue are ongoing.
Graeme Boxall commented: “I would like to say a massive thank you to all those who came down to support me today. I would especially like to thank the vast majority of
construction workers on site who showed such solidarity by respecting the
picket line, despite all the intimidation from the police and senior
“Millions of workers are being denied their basic employment rights by the
use of zero hours contracts, employment agencies and umbrella scams. But we
don’t have to passively accept these abuses. Today has proved that if we
fight back, we can win”.