Sixty workers have refused to start at the Linden Foods site in Dungannon this morning (Friday).
The group has demanded immediate talks with management over Coronavirus infection control measures at the plant.
Brian Hewitt, Unite Regional Officer for workers at Linden Foods in Dungannon, who was contacted by workers after they walked out this morning, said that his union will do whatever it takes to support our members’ fight for adequate Coronavirus infection controls.
“There have been ongoing issues between management and workers at Linden Foods in Dungannon over the issue of the absence of social distancing for workers on the boning line, in the canteen, changing areas and at entry and exit points,” said Mr Hewitt.
“The company’s management has provided no additional wash facilities and failed to stagger breaks,” he added.
“Workers have been reporting to Unite that those exhibiting symptoms are still allowed to work as are those with family members who self-isolating as result of being in the high risk health category. Everyone needs to take responsibility but company’s actions are putting workers needlessly at further risk.
“Both inside and outside the company, Unite has been raising health and safety concerns over the last weeks and unfortunately these have been ignored by management.
“In desperation and fear for their health and well-being, this morning approximately sixty workers refused to enter the workplace and sought assurances from management that two metres spacing would be adopted throughout.
“Management are continuing to ignore the concerns of their workers – they are putting the lives and well-being of their employees at risk – their intransigence is entirely unacceptable. Linden Foods must engage with these workers and commit to provide comprehensive infection control measures to end this walkout,” Mr Hewitt said.