Socialist Worker

Vestas bosses back down over hot meals

by Tom Walker on the Isle of Wight
Issue No. 2161

Workers occupying the Vestas wind turbine factory in Newport on the Isle of Wight today managed to force bosses to give them the first hot meal they’d had since the occupation started last Monday.

Vestas managers backed down at 7pm today—minutes after two protesters had attempted to evade the police and reach the occupation. The crowd of 200 pickets outside the plant surged forward and banged on the steel fence surrounding the plant shouting, “Let them through.”

The occupation is now into its fifth day. The management had been giving the occupiers some food since shortly after the steel fence was put up on the third day, but it has been cold food—snacks, sandwiches, and fruit—that has left the workers hungry and ill.

Before the protest, the workers released a statement saying, “This morning our food arrived. It was a choice between half a cheese sandwich, half a salmon paste sandwich or half a peanut butter sandwich.”

Steve, a Vestas worker, told the protest, “One of the managers was phoned and asked for more food. He told us maybe they would get half a sandwich or maybe a whole one. They’d just have to wait and see.”

The workers believe management is trying to starve them out.

Steve told the crowd, “Sky News interviewed Vestas’s head of communications in Denmark today. He told them that no one will starve to death in the factory as they’ve given the occupiers sandwiches.”

As the news about the hot meal was announced the crowd chanted, “We are winning.” Another protest is planned to take place outside the factory at 6pm on Sunday.

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