Motorway workers employed by Kier are set to protest on 18 August at the company’s offices, over the denial of sick pay
Kier’s motorway workers, who have provided a seven-day, 24-hour service throughout the Covid-19 pandemic have remained fully open and properly maintained, with delays due to accidents minimised.
Despite being required to work day and night in all conditions, the highways maintenance workers only receive statutory sick pay (SSP), which is worth just £96.35 a week.
Office-based staff at Kier and workers who are directly employed by client Highways England receive full sick pay from day one for a three-month period.
As part of the protest the motorway workers will be unveiling a banner which reads “Kier end the discrimination on sick pay”.
‘Level the playing field on sick pay’
Unite regional officer Malcom Bonnett, said: “Kier’s workers who operate in all weathers to keep the South East’s motorway network fully operational deserve full sick pay, when they are ill.
“The pandemic has exposed the fact that workers simply can’t survive on SSP which is less than £100 a week.
“The lack of sick pay results in workers continuing to come to work when they are ill. In normal times, due to the safety-critical work they undertake, this could have tragic consequences. During the Covid pandemic, it leads to unnecessary risk of exposure to infection.
“It is simply unjustifiable that office-based workers receive full sick pay while those working on the motorway network only receive SSP.
“With Kier recently being re-awarded the contract on Area 3, now is the perfect time for the company to act and level the playing field on sick pay.
“If Kier does not end the discrimination to motorway operatives Unite will step up the campaign which will involve further protests and the possibility of additional actions in order to secure a fair deal for our members.”