Civilian staff at Faslane and Coulport have started a series of strikes in a dispute with Babcock Marine.

Unite say the will impact all areas at the bases, including where the nuclear weapons are stored. Faslane is home to the UK’s fleet of Trident nuclear submarines, Coulport is where those weapons are stored and both are part of HMNB Clyde.

Members of the Unite union in roles such as radiation monitoring, weapons support, cleaning, maintenance an logistics are attempting to bring attentiont o what they call a “systematic campaign to undermine workers” by Babcock.

Unite regional officer Stephen Deans accused Babcock told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme:

“The agreed consultation and negotiation structures that we have at the base have been ignored by Babcock. Our elected representatives have been ignored mostly, or presented with decisions rather than being consulted before decisions are finally made.

Our representatives have been victimised and harassed by management. Our members have been forced into this action today. Management at Babcock Marine have engineered a complete breakdown of normal relations with workers.

Our fear is that they want to try and undermine workers’ rights so they can cut jobs and service quality through more outsourcing. They want to squeeze as much money as they can out of being involved in the nation’s defence. But our members work hard supporting the Royal Navy’s operations and will not allow profit to be put before service.

We have no doubt that this action will cause major disruption to the day-to-day services that Babcock Marine provides. If the company wants to resolve this dispute, it has to pledge to start acting as a reasonable employer that treats its staff as partners.”

Babcock have not issued a statement and have not responded to a request for comment.

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