Socialist Worker

British Gas workers are victims of fire and rehire

by Sophie Squire
Issue No. 2750

British Gas vans are piling up after workers were sacked

British Gas vans are piling up after workers were sacked


Many British Gas workers have expressed their anger and sadness after being sacked this week.

Around 7,000 GMB union members took to picket lines for more than 40 days this year after parent company Centrica planned to fire and rehire the workforce.

Workers were then given a final ultimatum that if they didn’t sign up for a new contract they would be fired on 14 April.

But a significant number have refused to sign.  Many, seeing no alternative, have decided to leave the company.

One British Gas worker wrote on Twitter, “Just had my last working day at British Gas after 22 years and my van goes back tomorrow.

“I’m doing my best to remain professional for my customers. Looks like it’s too late for me but we all need to keep fighting to change the law on fire and rehire.”

Photos of rows of British Gas vans that were taken away from workers have circulated on social media showing just how many workers will now be without a job.

Strike

The GMB called a strike for this Wednesday, 14 April. It says further strikes will be called.

But the union has made no statements about its members who have been forced to quit their jobs.

The GMB national leaders have repeatedly failed to escalate action to break the ruthless bosses’ assault.

Meanwhile, other unions have looked on and done nothing effective.

If union leaders don’t now challenge fire and rehire, it will be used by other firms.


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