BT and Openreach staff are on strike today and tomorrow over pay

staff at BT and Openreach will hit overpaid and will be the last batch of workers to leave this summer.

The CWU, the Communications Workers Unionrepresenting 40,000 workers at BT Group, said staff were showing “serious determination” to get one decent salary increasegoing out today and tomorrow.

The union said workers are opposed to the introduction of an “incredibly low” £1,500 lump sum wage increase.

CWU General Secretary Dave Ward said: “These are the same workforce who kept the country connected during the pandemic.

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“Without CWU members, there would not have been a work-from-home revolution, and vital technological infrastructure might have failed or broken when our country needed it most.

“These people have performed phenomenally under great stress and taken a real pay cut in return.

“The reason for the strike is simple: workers will not accept a massive drop in their standard of living.

“We will not have bosses using Swiss banks while workers use food banks.

“BT Group employees say enough is enough. They are genuinely determined to win and will not stop until they are listened to.”

CWU Deputy General Secretary Andy Kerr said: “Continued disrespect towards our workforce has led to strikes which have been overwhelmingly supported by the public.

“If the top executives at BT haven’t figured it out yet, this is a problem of their own making.

“BT Group employees are given the dignity they deserve. That means a decent raise and we won’t give up until we get it.”

A BT Group spokesman said: “We know our colleagues are struggling with the effects of high inflation and whilst we are disappointed we respect their decision to strike.

“We have awarded the best possible pay and are in constant discussions with the CWU to find a way forward from here. In the meantime, we will continue to work to minimize disruption and keep our customers and the country connected.”

The company said when it became clear it would not reach an agreement with the union, it granted its biggest pay rise in more than 20 years.

BT Group said a fully consolidated salary bonus for team members and front-line workers of £1,500 represents an average increase of around 5% and 8% for the lowest-paid workers, applicable from April 1 this year.

It was the highest salary increase in 20 years. BT and Openreach staff are on strike today and tomorrow over pay

Fry Electronics Team

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