Workers at the parcel delivery company Lynx have taken two days of strike action for an improved pay offer. The company bussed in dozens of agency workers to their main depot in Nuneaton, and then claimed the strike had “had no effect”.
Union officials persuaded the agencies to withdraw their staff and by lunchtime on the first strike day the agency staff had left. On the second strike day, agency workers were again bussed across the picket lines, but in much smaller numbers.
Despite the TGWU having no recognition agreement at Lynx, the strike has pushed management into requesting arbitration, firm evidence that the strike had a major impact on the business. Management presumably hope to barter recognition rights in return for the union backing down on the substantive issues.
Two more strike days have been set, for 24 and 25 November, and the workers are waiting to hear if management will make a revised offer. As yet the workers have no strike fund or strike committee established, a worrying sign. It is a mistake to leave all the decisions in the hands of union officials, who may have different priorities to the strikers.
Although the strike was solid at Nuneaton and in Scotland, workers at some Lynx depots worked through the last strike, including some RMT members. There is a long-running dispute between the TGWU and the RMT about recognition at Lynx, and it is imperative that this doesn’t undermine any further action to win an improvement to management’s paltry 2% pay offer. The next steps for the Lynx workers must include involving the RMT members in the dispute, and setting up a strike committee to co-ordinate action across all the company’s depots.