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Sellafield prepare for strike action

They'll be protesting against a below-inflation pay rise Credit: ITV Border

Management at Sellafield say they're finalising arrangements to ensure the safety of the nuclear site when workers go on strike.

Members of the GMB union at the plant have voted to walk out in a dispute over pay. They'll be protesting against a below-inflation pay rise. No date has been set for the industrial action.

We believe that a no-strings attached 1.5% pay increase is both fair and reasonable. We made that offer based on company affordability, and it was accepted by the Prospect Union which has collective bargaining rights for the largest group of our workforce.

The GMB represents around 2,000 of our 10,500 strong workforce. Clearly, we are disappointed at the GMB’s ballot result, and will now start to finalise our arrangements to ensure that the site remains safe and secure during any subsequent action."

– Sellafield Ltd statement

New Sellafield owners take over clean up operation

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority has taken over the running of the Sellafield site's clean up operation in a non-commercial contract.

The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority has taken over the running of the site from today. Credit: British Nuclear Group/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The site had been owned by private sector consortium Nuclear Management Partners (NMP) which was previously criticised for large overspends and long delays.

The change will allow Sellafield Ltd to progress its hazard and risk reduction and decommissioning, in order to deliver it more efficiently.

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Sellafield guarantees work for Cumbrians during decommissioning process

Cumbrian workers will be given priority in the decommissioning process Credit: PA Images

Sellafield has announced a deal guaranteeing jobs for local people during the decommissioning of the nuclear site.

The agreement has been signed between Sellafield Ltd and a series companies involved in the decommissioning process.

Among the promises made by the firms:

  • A 'local first' approach to recruitment, with one consortium aiming for 95% of its work carried out by Cumbrian staff
  • 150 jobs for what are described as 'under-represented or disadvantaged' people
  • Up to 240 new apprenticeships over 10 years
  • Training and business mentoring

Sellafield Ltd says these commitments will be written into the contracts of the organisations carrying out the decommissioning.

It suggests that more than a thousand jobs a year could be created or supported during the ten years of the decommissioning contracts.

Our first priority will always be the safe, secure and cost-effective clean-up of Sellafield.

But alongside that is a commitment to help deliver a long-term, sustainable economic future for our local community.

– Paul Foster, Managing Director, Sellafield Ltd

WATCH: Latest wave of Sellafield strikes

A fresh wave of industrial action to hit Sellafield.

Today saw hundreds of workers who monitor radiation levels, walk out in a dispute over pay.

With both parties - the GMB Union and management at the site - refusing to back down, more strikes are planned this week.

From Sellafield, ITV Border's Kate Walby reports.

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