A UNION has warned work on Royal Navy frigates faces disruption after shipyard workers in Glasgow backed strike action in a dispute over pay. 

GMB Scotland announced today almost 100 storeroom staff working in BAE Systems' warehouses at the Govan and Scotstoun yards have overwhelmingly supported industrial action in an official ballot. 

The union warns industrial action could seriously disrupt the yards’ work on Type 26 frigates for the Royal Navy.

However, a spokesperson for BAE Systems said strike action would involve a small fraction of the workforce in Glasgow and they have systems in place to ensure there will be no impact. 

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The workers, who are employed by subcontractor Wincanton, are fighting to close a pay gap which means some workers are being paid almost £2 more per hour than colleagues. 

GMB Scotland said the pay gap has stayed despite industrial action two years ago, with most of the workers being paid £13.30 an hour while a dozen staff previously transferred from BAE Systems receive almost £15 an hour.

They are calling for the gap between the workers to be closed within two years and the stores' staff pay to be aligned with BAE support staff.

The ballot revealed 98% of store staff, who organise and distribute tools, materials and safety equipment, backed strike action with a turnout of more than 90%. 

It comes as talks with Wincanton, a logistics company, have stalled and the ballot means notice for action could be served within days leading to strikes at the shipyards and two supply hubs at Eurocentral and Linwood later this month.

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Dom Pritchard, GMB Scotland organiser, said: "The efficient and effective running of these shipyards is built on the support and expertise of these workers.

"The company must now understand the determination of these workers for that role to be properly recognised and fairly rewarded.

"How can it be right that colleagues, working alongside each other, doing the same important job, can be paid so differently?

"It is not fair, has gone on too long and needs to be addressed finally and in full.

"This ballot reveals our members are united and prepared to take whatever action is necessary to ensure an end to this unfairness."

A spokesperson for Wincanton said: "We value the vital work our colleagues carry out every day.

"The offer we have put forward is fair and competitive.

"We remain committed to finding a resolution that satisfies all parties."

A BAE Systems’ spokesperson said: "This is a matter for Wincanton and its workforce.

"We have made temporary arrangements to ensure there is no impact to our activities from the strike action."