Dumbarton's MP has called on BT bosses to deliver a fair pay deal to its workers to avoid further industrial action.

SNP MP Martin Docherty-Hughes has written to BT Group CEO Philip Jensen in support of local workers and their families who have been forced into strike action for the first time in 35 years over pay and conditions. 

BT Group employees, including engineers and call centre workers, held two-day national strike action this week – with picket lines set up across the country including the telephone exchange in Dumbarton. 

Mr Docherty-Hughes said: “Industrial action is never taken lightly but when companies like BT are posting billions in profit workers have every right to fight for fair pay and conditions. 

“I’ve been contacted by dozens of BT workers and their families in West Dunbartonshire who are deeply worried about making ends meet amidst the UK’s worsening cost-of-living crisis. They have my full support in pressing BT chief executive Philip Jensen for a fair pay deal. 

“The corporate culture of companies claiming they’re unable to afford reasonable pay rises for ordinary workers whilst they rake in huge profits cannot continue. 

“These workers deserve a fair pay deal and I urge senior management to return to the negotiating table with an improved offer.” 

According to the Communications & Workers Union (CWU), 95.8 per cent of Openreach engineers voted for action and members within BT had a 91.5 per cent majority for the walkout.

The strike focuses on BT imposing a pay settlement on employees for £1,500 per annum – a real terms pay cut at a time when BT has posted annual profits of £1.3 billion. 

A CWU spokesperson said: “In every town and city, BT Group employees have manned over 400 picket lines, showing their opposition to a management that doesn’t seem to care about them.

“The dispute should be a wake-up call to Philip Jansen and BT Group that workers in this country will not sit idly by and watch their living standards crumble.

“The public is fed up at the level of corporate greed in this country today, and our members are no different in telling BT Group that enough is enough.”


A BT Group spokesperson said: "At the start of this year, we were in exhaustive discussions with the CWU that lasted for two months, trying hard to reach an agreement on pay.

"When it became clear that we were not going to reach an accord, we took the decision to go ahead with awarding our frontline colleagues the highest pay award in more than 20 years, representing a pay rise of around 5 per cent on average and 8 per cent for the lowest paid.

"We have been in constant dialogue with the CWU and we have reaffirmed our willingness to discuss how we move forward from here but it would be inappropriate to re-open negotiations on a pay award that we implemented in April, when it was due."