‘We want better pay’, say Lincoln Bifrangi workers ahead of ballot on industrial action

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Workers at engineering firm Bifrangi in Lincoln have expressed anger at current pay levels in a public meeting and demonstration on Tuesday, November 29.

Around 30 members of GMB Union gathered outside the Bifrangi facility on Spa Road in between shifts to publicly vote on whether processes should be started for industrial action against the Italian-owned company.

A unanimous “yes” vote from those who attended means a mandate will now be put to the union’s 88 members in the company of over 130 staff.

At least 60% of the total votes will be required before industrial action can take place.

This can take the form of an overtime ban, work to rule or an all-out strike.

Bifrangi is an engineering firm specialising in forged components in the agricultural, off-highway, marine, power and mining sectors.

The company has recently invested £50 million in new state-of-the-art equipment and research and development centre on its Lincoln site.

Regional organiser for GMB Union Colin Todd told Lincolnshire Business staff haven’t received an increase on their basic pay since 2013 and claimed a 1% pay rise to all staff would cost the company £33,000.

He said: “The company is saying that they have not made any money but they have made capital investments in the machinery and buildings but not in the workers’ pay packet.

“For three years they’ve been taking home the same pay packet so you have to adjust you spending because everything is going up from food to gas and electricity. The cost of living is going up every year and they’ve had no increase.

The company has left us no alternative other than to proceed in this way.

“The company says it is running at a loss currently and that the investment they’ve put in is for the future.

“We’ve said that we’re not happy with that and that they need to invest in the workforce as well.”

When contacted by Lincolnshire Business, Bifrangi declined to comment.