Interface Europe strike action ends after Craigavon workers' 'inflation-busting' pay increase

Unite the Union flags
Workers took to picket lines at Craigavon's Interface Europe. Credit: Stock image/PA

Workers at a Co Armagh flooring manufacturer have ended their strike action after accepting a 15% pay increase.

Unite members at Interface Europe's Craigavon site voted overwhelmingly to end their action following, what's been described as, an "inflation-busting" offer.

According to the trade union, the increase translates into a real-terms improvement of more than 3.5%.

The dispute had started after workers rejected a previous offer from management which would have resulted in a pay increase of 5.25% with an additional 2% for hourly employees working shifts.

The agreement has been welcomed as "a big win" by Unite.

Sharon Graham said: "This inflation-busting pay increase was won through militant and effective strike action which shut down production and forced bosses to share their profits with the Craigavon workforce.

“This increase was even more necessary as workers report their pay having fallen behind others in the locality. This pay increase sets the bar for workers across the board.”

The union's regional officer said the increase was "not only about pay, but also standing up for respect in their workplace".

Neil Moore said agency workers at the firm also supported their action.

"Whilst this pay increase will certainly improve things for our members, the company must be prepared to sit up and listen to our members from now on," he added.

"We are now looking to engage with [agency] workers to secure real improvements to their pay and conditions of employment.”

Eline Oudenbroek, vice president supply chain for Interface said: "We are pleased to have reached a satisfactory outcome with our team.”

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