Bank of England staff to strike for first time in 50 years after talks fail | Business

The first strike by Bank of England workers in more than 50 years is to go ahead from Tuesday after last-ditch talks broke down.

Members of Unite working in departments including maintenance and security will walk out for three days in a dispute over pay.

The union, which is protesting at the imposition of a below-inflation pay offer, blamed the Bank of England governor, Mark Carney, for the failure of the talks, held at the conciliation service Acas.

A protest will be held outside the Bank’s headquarters in the City of London on Tuesday, when staff will wear Carney masks.

Unite accused the Bank of imposing a “derisory” below-inflation pay increase for the second year running. Up to a third of staff will get no pay rise this year, according to the union.

Unite official Peter Kavanagh said: “The governor of the Bank of England must take responsibility for the fact that his dedicated workforce is having to make their concerns heard from a picket line.

“The result of the Bank’s failure to negotiate with staff is that the Bank of England now faces its first strike action in over 50 years.

“Unite members from the maintenance, parlours and security departments have been left with no choice but to take industrial action because they are facing another year of having to endure a pay cut imposed upon them.”

An Acas spokesman said: “Acas conciliation talks have ended without the sides reaching agreement. Our services remain available.”

A Bank spokesman said: “The union balloted approximately 2% of the workforce. The Bank has plans in place so that all essential business will continue to operate as normal during this period. The Bank has been in talks with Unite up to and including today and remains ready to continue those talks at any time.”

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