Yodel drivers threaten strike, may cause further delay to some stores

0
Representative iStock image

Delivery giant Yodel is facing a crisis and fear of shutdown after hundreds of drivers voted to strike over pay and conditions, potentially adding to disruption caused by lorry driver shortages.

More than 250 Yodel drivers have voted to take industrial action, stated GMB Union, with a claim that a massive 98 per cent of drivers voted to take industrial action, on an 84 per cent turnout. 

The dates for the first round of industrial action is yet to be decided.

The dispute is expected to affect deliveries for Marks & Spencer, Aldi and Very from Yodel’s depots in Hatfield in Hertfordshire, Glasgow and Wednesbury in the West Midlands.

The news comes as drivers at the Booker distribution network have also moved closer to industrial action in disputes over pay and conditions.

The dispute began when Yodel allegedly tried to impose unworkable driver schedules. The union has claimed that the delivery service company tried to rob drivers of annual leave by not adhering to long held agreements and “offering agency drivers enhancements while not offering the same to the loyal directly employed workforce”.

GMB also accused Yodel of “dragging its heels” on substantial pay increases, keeping drivers from leaving for better-paying jobs elsewhere, especially at a time when employers across the country were scrambling to hire workers.  

Nadine Houghton, GMB National Officer, confirmed that GMB drivers working for delivery giant Yodel have returned a massive vote in favour of taking industrial action over pay and working conditions. 

“With acute labour shortages across a range of sectors the time for working people to organise and take action to improve their lot is right now,” Houghton said, adding that during impending first round of strikes and majority of Yodel’s drivers voting to walk out, deliveries will be significantly hit.  

Meanwhile, a Yodel spokesperson said that “meaningful talks with GMB officials” has been  scheduled for next week.

“We will continue to work in good faith and remain committed to find a resolution for our valued transport colleagues on any outstanding matters,” Yodel spokesperson said.