industrial dispute

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Related to Strike action: work stoppage, strikebreaking

industrial dispute

a dispute between an employer (or group of employers) and one or more workers usually arising over pay and conditions of employment, allocation of work, work discipline etc. The current official definition in the UK states that it is a dispute between workers and their employer (i.e. not another employer) and that it relates mainly or wholly to their conditions of employment (see CONTRACT OF EMPLOYMENT). The definition excludes disputes between workers (thereby excluding inter-TRADE UNION conflicts). Disputes that fall outside the official definition (for example INDUSTRIAL ACTION taken by workers or trade unions in furtherance of political objectives) are not covered by TRADE UNION IMMUNITIES and hence those involved are liable to legal action by employers in the civil courts.

A large number of UK employers are party (either directly or indirectly through EMPLOYERS' ASSOCIATIONS) to a DISPUTES PROCEDURE or GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE which governs how disputes of this kind should be dealt with and resolved. Where such procedures are absent or where it is not possible to resolve the dispute in this way some form of INDUSTRIAL ACTION such as a STRIKE may occur. Industrial disputes may be settled in a number of ways, including voluntary agreement between the parties concerned or through some form of third party intervention. See ARBITRATION, COLLECTIVE BARGAINING, CONCILIATION, CONFLICT, MEDIATION.

Collins Dictionary of Business, 3rd ed. © 2002, 2005 C Pass, B Lowes, A Pendleton, L Chadwick, D O’Reilly and M Afferson

industrial dispute

a dispute between one or more employers, or organizations of employers, and one or more workers or organizations of workers (TRADE UNIONS), where the dispute relates wholly or mainly to matters of trade. Such matters may comprise terms and/or conditions of employment; the engagement, termination or suspension of employment of workers; the allocation of work between workers; matters of discipline, and so forth.

Serious industrial disputes are often characterized by STRIKE action on the part of workers and/or the LOCK-OUT of workers by management. Industrial disputes may be settled in a number of ways, including voluntary agreement between the parties concerned or by recourse to an independent arbiter. See INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS, COLLECTIVE BARGAINING, ARBITRATION, MEDIATION, CONCILIATION.

Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
He said: "It is disappointing that GMB will be proceeding with strike action when the turnout was so low.
He said the union welcomed meetings with Royal Mail, due to be held this week, but added: "Until there is a material difference for our members, we will not be in a position to call off strike action."
"In Europe strike action organised by trade unions is generally protected and seen as a right, whereas in the UK it is illegal for trade unions to induce employees to strike unless the union complies with specific procedures around balloting and notice to employers.
"Our members don't want to disrupt students' learning, and can ill afford to lose pay through taking strike action, but they also cannot afford to accept the employer's position of there being no pay rise for this year."
Ballot papers for Unite's members in England, Wales and Northern Ireland will start landing on doormats from Saturday, August 26, asking them whether they wish to take strike action or industrial action short of a strike.
This is the second form of strike action to hit the Metro system this month after a walkout by transport workers caused disruption for commuters and Coldplay concert-goers in Sunderland as trains came to a standstill for 24 hours on June 7.
The economic crisis means no let up for the public sector where today Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes reveals additional cuts may have to be made - a situation likely to be repeated at town halls across the North East Meanwhile, the threat by the union Unison to vote on strike action means ordinary folk could be hit very hard.
UNIONS are to ballot for strike action over Network Rail's plans to axe 1,500 maintenance workers.
Summary: London postal workers have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action.
STRIKE action that was set to involve thousands of public sector workers on Teesside was called off at the last minute.
FIREFIGHTERS last night agreed to ballot for strike action after a colleague was sacked over claims he was overweight.