United union workers at British outwear label Barbour called off a four-week strike after staff accepted a new deal on shifts and compensation. Workers returned to work on Wednesday.
Warehouse workers at the company’s Gateshead facility began to strike on Jan. 5 over proposed new working hours, which Unite called “anti-family.” The agreement, which came about after the conciliation service Acas intervened, offers more pay and more flexibility to employees with family and caring responsibilities.
Unite regional officer Fazia Huassain-Brown said, “This hard won outcome would not have been possible without the resolve of the workers who faced being sacked if they didn’t sign up to inferior contracts. They stood up in the face of an employer who sought to ride rough shod over their rights and won significant concessions. We trust that we can now move forward with the employer in a spirit of cooperation and ensure the Barbour brand continues to be a global success story.”
Barbour finance and IT director Brenda Readman-Bell said the company is pleased to have reached an agreement. She said, “The industrial action has been difficult for everyone as we have historically enjoyed very good relations with our staff. It is essential we have the flexibility to manage the business to the good of our entire workforce and the acceptance of the new deal is indicative of the company’s determination to be fair in order to achieve this satisfactory outcome for all.”