Socialist Worker

Unions are picking up at Penguin

by Dave Crouch
Issue No. 2162

Three hundred staff packed into the canteen at Penguin/Dorling Kindersley in central London on Wednesday of last week to discuss job cuts.

Management is insisting on 106 compulsory redundancies at the company.

NUJ and Unite union members joined with non-union workers and voted overwhelmingly to follow the example set by NUJ colleagues at the Financial Times – also owned by Pearson – and to fight the job cuts. 

The meeting voted to hold a formal vote on a ballot for industrial action if management refuses to back down on compulsories.

One worker, who has just recently joined the NUJ union, told Socialist Worker, “There’s real strength of feeling here right now.

“Everyone is furious that we’re being given no real justification for such significant job losses.

“We’re determined to fight them. We all feel that we deserve to be treated far more decently and honestly after working so hard to make the company so successful.”

Both unions have been recruiting rapidly as staff set out to defend their jobs.

Penguin recently reported record results and there is a strong feeling that there is no need for people to lose their livelihoods in the midst of the recession.

Management also wants to outsource work to India.

Penguin workers need to launch a campaign to win a ballot and convince workers that they can fight these cuts.

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Article information

Tue 28 Jul 2009, 18:56 BST
Issue No. 2162
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