Unite General Secretary (above) as members stage noisy protest at Marmite HQ over pensions

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Unilever workers today staged a noisy protest outside the firm’s offices in a dispute over pensions which is set to escalate into a series of strikes.

Scores of union members from factories across the country arrived at the firm’s London offices on an open top bus (above), chanting: “Where’s our pension gone” and carrying  banners with the slogan “Hands off our Pensions”.

The protest follows a decision at the weekend to call a series of strikes at factories for up to 12 days starting on January 17.

Workers held a one-day strike last year in protest at the ending of Unilever’s final salary pension scheme.

Unilever workers from sites at Purfleet, Port Sunlight, Warrington, Leeds, Crumlin, Gloucester, Manchester, Burton-on-Trent and Chester say they are fighting an “unjustified” attack on their pensions.

Unions said the stoppages will hit production of the global giant’s leading brands, including Dove, Marmite, PG Tips, Pot Noodle and Hellman’s Mayonnaise.

Unite, the GMB and Usdaw say the company’s plans to axe the final salary pension scheme will see the retirement income of thousands of staff slashed by up to 40%.

Speaking at today’s demonstration, Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said unions were determined to continue fighting Unilever’s decision.

“How dare a company that generates massive profits attack your pensions, which you have saved for. We are not prepared to stand back and do nothing.”


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