Steel giant Corus is pushing ahead with redundancies and plant closures. That is the real message from a meeting it held with union leaders on Monday. It focused on the results of redundancies that have already been announced. But many more job losses are coming.
Corus says it aims to slash £450-£500 million a year from its costs. That heralds at least one plant closure and possibly more. The Observer last weekend said, ‘Corus directors have informed union officials that Llanwern would almost certainly be shut when the results of the company’s internal review are announced early in February.’
Llanwern, near Newport, employs 3,000 people directly, but at least 10,000 jobs are dependent on the plant. The ISTC steel union is going ahead with a strike ballot over compulsory redundancies at the Scunthorpe plant and is preparing for a similar vote at Teesside.
Any strike action linked to the job losses would be a big step forward. But the union leaders should stop fighting job losses on a case by case basis and instead directly confront Corus’s job slashing strategy. The union must start campaigning now for strikes across all the plants.
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