BBC Staff Could Strike During Queen's Diamond Jubilee Celebrations

PA/The Huffington Post UK  |  Posted: 19/04/2012 11:54 Updated: 19/04/2012 12:36

The Queen

BBC journalists and technicians are to be balloted for industrial action over pay, threatening coverage of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations, unions said today.

The BBC and the unions representing their employees are currently locked in a battle over a new pay deal.

However, the strike ballot is a response to the BBC deciding to raise employee salaries by 1% before negotiations concluded, Bectu, the broadcasting union, confirmed.

The general secretary of Bectu, Gerry Morrissey, said that the threat of a strike in the midst of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations was "regrettable" but was a response to a "derisory" offer from the BBC.

"We had informed them that a direct offer of 1% would be seen as a hostile act by the joint unions. We now have no option but to call a strike ballot at the earliest opportunity."

Morrissey alleges that the offer was "an act of poor faith" from the broadcasting company, but that the imposed rise is "very helpfully placing a down-payment in our members pockets to help them through any forthcoming Jubilee strike."

The BBC responded by saying that the rise was intended to be a method of "recognising the hard work that is going on across the BBC in implementing the savings we need to make and meeting the challenges we face in 2012."

A BBC spokesman added that they were disappointed that a strike ballot had been called and that in the current economic climate, the action will not change their position.

Check out the news of the day in pictures below:
  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Employees pose putting the finishing touches to new waxwork statues of Britain's Prince William (R) and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (L) as they are unveiled at Madame Tussauds in Blackpool, north-west England on April 19, 2012. The Duchess is dressed in an exact copy of the stunning Jenny Packham dress she wore for the ARK charity dinner, the first time she and Prince William appeared as a married couple. (Photo credit: ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Ekaterina Samutsevich, a member of female Russian punk band Pussy Riot waves as she is escorted to the court in Moscow, on April 19, 2012. Three members of the all-woman punk band 'Pussy Riot' were detained two months ago, after they climbed on the altar of Moscow's Christ the Saviour Cathedral - the country's central place of worship - and sang a song they called a 'Punk Prayer'. The women have been charged with hooliganism committed by an organised group - an unusually harsh charge for protesters. (Photo credit: ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Police officers detain a supporter of female Russian punk band Pussy Riot outside the court in Moscow, on April 19, 2012, before the hearings on the Pussy Riot case. Three members of the all-woman punk band 'Pussy Riot' were detained two months ago, after they climbed on the altar of Moscow's Christ the Saviour Cathedral -- the country's central place of worship -- and sang a song they called a 'Punk Prayer'. The women have been charged with hooliganism committed by an organised group -- an unusually harsh charge for protesters. (Photo credit: ANDREY SMIRNOV/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Andy Murray of Britain plays a return shot to Julien Benneteau of France during their match at the Monte Carlo Tennis Masters tournament in Monaco, Thursday, April 19, 2012. (Photo credit: AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    France's Julien Benneteau reacts as he lays on the ground after a fall during his match againt's British Andy Murray during the Monte-Carlo ATP Masters Series Tournament tennis match, on April 19, 2012 in Monaco. Murray won the match after Benneteau injured both his right ankle and arm. (Photo credit: VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Two Iraqi women walk along a street in the capital Baghdad as a sand storm envelops the city on April 19, 2012. (Photo credit: SABAH ARAR/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Israelis pause during a two-minute siren in memory of victims of the Holocaust in the market in Jerusalem, Thursday, April 19, 2012. The day is one of the most solemn on Israel's calendar. Restaurants and places of entertainment shut down, and radio and TV programming focuses on Holocaust documentaries and interviews with survivors. (Photo credit: AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    France's incumbent President and UMP ruling party's candidate for the 2012 presidential election, Nicolas Sarkozy speaks during a campaing meeting on April 19, 2012 in the French city of Saint-Maurice outside Paris. (Photo credit: MICHEL EULER/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Newly-recruited Thai women rangers take part in a training session at a military camp in Narathiwat province on April 19, 2012. More than 5,100 people have been killed - both Muslims and Buddhists - in attacks across Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat since unrest escalated in January 2004, according to Deep South Watch which monitors the violence. (Photo credit: MADAREE TOHLALA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Philippine marines carry a colleague acting as fallen enemy during an ambush simulation as part of the two-week PH-US military exercise inside the Philippine marines training center in Ternate town, Cavite province, south of Manila on April 19, 2012. The Philippines hailed the start of major war games with the United States on April 16, as a timely boost to the two nations' military alliance amid growing regional security challenges. (Photo credit: TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    One Direction fans wait at Auckland International Airport for the arrival of the band on April 19, 2012 in Auckland, New Zealand. One Direction peforms to sold-out audiences in Auckland on Saturday and Wellington on Sunday. (Photo credit: Phil Walter/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Indonesian militant Umar Patek arrive in handcuffs and escorted by armed police commandos at the Jakarta court on April 19, 2012 in the resumption of his trial. Patek is the suspected bomb maker of the deadly 2002 Bali bombing. (Photo credit: ROMEO GACAD/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    An Iraqi soldier walks past the debris at the scene of two car bombs close to the governate in the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk on April 19, 2012, which left several people dead. A wave of bomb attacks in four different provinces across Iraq killed at least 30 people security officials said. (Photo credit: MARWAN IBRAHIM/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    Defence lawyer Vibeke Hein Baera (R) speaks to prosecutor Inga Bejer Engh (L) before Right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik arrives in room 250 of the central court in Oslo in Oslo on April 19, 2012. The trial against Anders Behring Breivik charged with committing 'acts of terror' when he slaughtered 77 people in twin attacks in July 2011 that shook the tranquil Scandinavian country to its core got under way Monday, 16 April. (Photo credit: DANIEL SANNUM LAUTEN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Pictures Of The Day: 19 April

    A Myanmar woman hold a baby street in Yangon on April 19, 2012. The United States invited Myanmar's foreign minister and said on April 18 that democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi, who is traveling abroad for the first time in decades, had an 'open invitation.' AFP PHOTO / Soe Than WIN (Photo credit: Soe Than WIN/AFP/Getty Images)

FOLLOW UK