Union secures sick pay for 10,000 Kier workers
The Unite union has claimed victory securing sick pay for 10,000 Kier Group workers and has urged other construction employers to follow suit.
Following a campaign by the union, the construction giant has agreed to implement sick pay across the company.
Around 10,800 workers working for the Kier Group on highways and construction will now receive sick pay of up to £100 per day from day one of their illness, a vast improvement on the statutory rate which can be as little as £16 per day.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This is a much-needed step forward in an industry which is notorious for insecure pay and an inadequate safety record. We urge other construction employers to provide the same cover for their workers.
“Thanks to the terrific efforts of Unite team, 19,000 Keir workers now have added protection when sick. This is what Unite does, it protects the jobs, pay and conditions of our members.”
Unite regional officer for the construction sector Malcolm Bonnett added: “Unite has been campaigning hard to end the discrimination on sick pay for construction workers so we’re delighted by this victory. Statutory sick pay in the UK is the lowest in Europe so it was vital we persuaded the employer, a wealthy business, that they had a duty to pay when workers are ill.
“From here, we build further. Unite is determined that other construction employers act to end sick pay discrimination, too.”
A Kier spokesperson said: “At Kier, we recognise that our people are our greatest asset and our teams have been working hard to provide industry-leading policies and measures to support our people. In the last 12 months, we have launched improved family-friendly policies, our new and enhanced standard for sick pay for all and we have become signatories of the Real Living Wage.
“All of these actions reflect the plans we put in place as a result of our strategic review. They form part of our Performance Excellence culture and underline our focus and commitment on doing the right thing.”