What is Industrial Action?

There is no statutory definition of industrial action but as a rule of thumb, any concerted action which is used as a bargaining tool to put pressure on an employer could amount to industrial action. Industrial action generally falls into two basic categories: a strike – i.e. an outright stoppage of work; and action short of a strike – for example an overtime ban, go slow, work to rule or sit-in. Disputes between employers and workers/unions will usually be resolved through negotiation or existing dispute resolution arrangements but where this doesn’t work, unions and workers may resort to industrial action. You need to be absolutely clear on what you can and should do in response.

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