Socialist Worker

Swathe of job cuts hitting everyone

Issue No. 2140

Unemployment is stalking towns and cities across Britain.

In Burnley, Lancashire, there are 22 unemployed workers for each job available. The town’s job centre last month listed just 98 jobs.

The 2,170 people in the town claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance are told to chase these few jobs.

And bosses are planning even more job losses in manufacturing, the service industry and the public sector.

The manufacturing giant GKN plans to close three factories, slashing 560 jobs.

Some 750 jobs are set go in Bristol as the Co-op, the new owner of the Somerfield supermarket chain, looks to close the company’s head office.

The Unite union has warned that 20,000 jobs could go at the state-owned Royal Bank of Scotland.

Leeds council wants to axe 650 jobs, mainly in schools. More than 1,100 Nottingham council staff received letters at the start of this week warning them they are at risk of redundancy, or in a pool from which job cuts will be made.

Unions have vowed to fight. Last month, the council said it planned to axe over 350 staff to save money. Homecare and youth workers, children’s care staff and cleaners are facing redundancy.

Slash

North West London Hospitals NHS Trust plans to slash expenditure by £32 million leading to 270 job cuts at Northwick Park, St Mark’s and Central Middlesex Hospitals.

Mobile phone company Vodafone is axing 500 jobs.

Mining giant Anglo American will shed 19,000 jobs worldwide this year despite reporting £6.85 million operating profits.

The multinational owns Tarmac in Britain and is planning job cuts there. 

Most people in employment feel insecure in their jobs because of the recession, according to a “grim” new report by Career Energy.

Just one in five questioned felt their job was secure. More than half said that their job was their number one worry.

Employers will seize on this uncertainty to attack wages, conditions and pensions unless the unions fight.

The number of “precarious” workers on temporary contracts being denied paid holidays and sickness pay is growing.

Meanwhile Cambridge University Press (CUP) is to hold a garden party to mark its 425th anniversary just as it cuts printing staff.

One retired worker asked, “In view of the fact the Press is making 160 people redundant, is it appropriate to celebrate 425 years of printing at CUP?”


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Tue 24 Feb 2009, 18:21 GMT
Issue No. 2140
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