Unite drivers have deadline of 21st May whether to accept package of ‘final proposals’ in dispute with seven major fuel haulage companies (Pictured: drivers strike earlier in the dispute, January 2012)

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Unite fuel tanker drivers have been given a deadline of 21st May to decide whether to accept a package of ‘final proposals’ in their dispute with seven major haulage companies over minimum pay, pensions and safety issues.

(Pictured: Unite drivers on strike earlier in the dispute, N Lincolnshire, January 2012)

A late night agreement last night followed 12 hours of talks mediated by the conciliation service Acas between Unite and executives from the hauliers.

Acas chief conciliator Peter Harwood said: “Following a further two days of intensive discussions, a final set of proposals has been produced by the fuel distribution contractors and Unite.

“The industrial action mandate has been extended to May 21 to enable Unite to consult with its Oils Trade Conference and the membership on these proposals.”

“As I said last time, the details of the proposals are confidential until the parties report back to their respective organisations.

“After that the detail may be disclosed by the parties themselves.”

A meeting of drivers’ representatives is expected to be held in the next few days and may be followed by a ballot of Unite members.

Last week, representatives of more than 2,000 drivers overwhelmingly rejected an earlier 4-page document, drawn up during six days of Acas negotiations.

Under the anti-union legislation covering industrial action ballots, Unite initially had until last week to notify the seven firms of any intended strike days.

That deadline has now been extended into next month, lifting any threat of immediate industrial action.

For more than a year, Unite has been seeking to negotiate a minimum national pay level across the fuel haulage industry.


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