14 April 2015
RMT Press Office
RMT secures major victory on zero hours contracts on P&O Dover-Calais route
With a major political focus on zero hours contracts in the current general election campaign, transport and shipping union RMT has confirmed today that it has secured a major victory, reversing the zero hours status for a sizable number of staff working out of Dover.
After extensive negotiations and campaigning, RMT’s Dover Shipping branch has been able to secure another 100 full time contracts for P&O On Board Service Ratings on the Short Sea route Dover to Calais.
RMT says that this important breakthrough has been achieved through a team effort by the whole Port Committee highlighting why the Zero Hours contracts are a bad deal the employees but also why they are not beneficial for the employer.
The deal will take 100 ratings of off zero hours status and give them a salary of just under £17,000 with an additional £500 in increments over the next 5 years as well as additional sickness benefits and paid leave.
The latest breakthrough takes the RMT Dover branches total in 2015 so far to moving 137 ratings on to full time contracts and off of zero hours. The union will now continue to take the campaign forwards and has made it clear that is committed to continuing the fight against these contracts across the rail, maritime and transport industries as a whole .
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“It is a tribute to the hard and persistent work of RMT’s Dover Shipping Branch and the Port Committee that a hundred more staff on the Dover Calais route will be lifted out of the uncertainty and insecurity of zero hours contracts and onto permanent agreements with a host of other benefits.
“With zero hours contracts centre stage during this election RMT has proved once again that if you want security, decent pay and decent conditions you need to join a strong trade union that will stand up and fight for you. It is also important to note that P&O have recognised the benefits to themselves as an employer of taking a more progressive and supportive approach to their workers.
"RMT has been against zero hours contracts from the beginning and it is a top priority of both our Dover Shipping Branch and the union as a whole to keep the pressure on the companies that we deal with to eradicate these contracts within the industries where we organise."