INEOS workers vote to strike at Grangemouth refinery in Scotland

More than 81% of workers at INEOS' Grangemouth refinery in Scotland have voted to strike, according to a Friday news release from local trade union group Unite.

The Grangemouth refinery can process 210,000 bpd of crude, with roughly 30% of its output as distillates, according to Bloomberg.

"This overwhelming result reflects the genuine ill-feeling held by the Grangemouth workforce, because of the grossly unfair treatment of Stephen Deans, who has 24 years of loyal service at the site," said Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish regional secretary.

"Despite the ongoing threats of plant closures at the Grangemouth site, the workforce are determined to support their colleague and to bring this injustice to an end," he added. "This tight-knit community has no tolerance for the unfair treatment of a trade unionist because they know that an attack against one is an attack against all."

Deans, who has worked at Grangemouth 24 years, also serves as the chairman of the Falkirk Constituency Labour Party (CLP).

He was briefly suspended by the Labour Party in July 2013 following an investigation into claims of vote-rigging in Falkirk in the selection process to find a replacement for outgoing Labour MP Eric Joyce.

Deans was subsequently cleared by the party, though, and reinstated as the local party chairman. A police investigation into the issue was also dropped.

Since then, however, INEOS has begun investigating whether his activities were in line with his role as an employee and a convener. INEOS has said that probe will conclude on October 18, with a decision published October 25.

Friday's vote has a turnout of 86%, according to Unite officials. Within that percentage, 90.6% of workers voted for industrial action short of a strike, with 9.4% against. Meanwhile, 81.4% voted for strike action and 18.6% voted against.

INEOS had yet to issue public comment on the strike as of Friday afternoon.

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