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ABI denies that union rep was dismissed for raising health and safety concerns over new working practices at Salmesbury brewery

ABI, union clash over health and safety rep dismissal

Workers at AB InBev’s Salmesbury brewery are planning to stage an overtime ban from 13th August in a bid to reinstate a trade union health and safety representative dismissed by the global brewing giant.

Members of the GMB at the site near Preston were balloted after the union claimed that rep Paul Morley was sacked on 13th June “for trying to look after the well-being of his colleagues”, describing it as “a disgrace.”

But in a statement ABI denied the dismissal for “refusing a reasonable management request” resulted from Morley raising worries about health and safety at the plant.

The GMB says he had accused ABI of failing to conduct a proper assessment of fatigue caused by a new process designed to speed up the brewing process.

“We understand management may want to streamline processes – all we ask is they follow the usual health and safety assessments,” said GMB regional organiser Shaun Buckley. “Now members will have the opportunity to support Paul by voting for strike action.”

An ABI spokesperson said it was continuing a dialogue with trade union representatives.

“As a responsible brewer and business, health and safety is our number one priority. While we can’t go into detail on individual or ongoing employee cases, we want to emphasise the employee in question was not dismissed for raising health and safety concerns.

“We take our commitment to health and safety seriously and ensure all processes adhere to our high standards, as well as to legal requirements. The safety of our processes has been confirmed using a certified assessment tool from the Health and Safety Executive.”

Phil Mellows 
7th August 2018

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