Coastguards hold second strike

British coastguards took part in a second 24-hour strike last Friday 11th April over pay.

Submitted by Ed on April 14, 2008

The coastguard station in Holyhead, Anglesey, was closed with calls being handled by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) in Liverpool. Milford Haven and Swansea coastguards were also be involved in the strike.

The UK-wide strike started at 7am April 11th, involving 600 members of the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) and will affect coastguard operations rooms.

The industrial action was taken by those responsible for co-ordinating rescues with rescuers themselves continuing to operate as normal, though coastguards said they were willing to return to work if someone's life was in danger.

The action follows the first ever strike by coastguards on 6 March and a third 24-hour strike is planned to take place from 7pm 23rd April until 7pm 24th April.

Since last Tuesday, staff have also been working-to-rule, dealing with emergency calls only and not carrying out administrative work such as writing reports and dealing with e-mails.

Coastguard Watch assistants, who actively participate in search planning and other duties in response to 999 calls, only earn the national minimum wage. The workers are demanding another £3,000 on top of their current base pay of £14,000 a year. They are also demanding a starting salary of £12,097 to increase.