Tuesday 24 October 2017

Strike threat as 1,600 steel jobs axed

Tom Wilkinson and Alan Jones

Trade Unions in England threatened to cause "maximum damage" to the Corus steel firm as it closed a major works in Britain yesterday with the loss of at least 1,600 jobs.

As mothballing at Corus's huge Redcar site began, ending 170 years of mass steelmaking on Teesside in the north-east of England, workers described the atmosphere as being like a funeral.

While the search continued for a buyer to take on the plant, one of the area's main employers, some blamed the bosses and others the government for not doing more to help.

The Community Union -- the biggest representative of Corus workers -- said any industrial action would be planned to severely damage the Indian owners Tata.

It said up to 8,000 jobs would be lost in the wider community as a result of the mothballing.

General Secretary Michael Leahy said: "We know that there are a number of good faith offers on the table, yet Tata Corus are not interested.

"Make no mistake, calling this mothballing is simply sugar coating a closure," he said.

Members will be asked to consider strike action in support of the Teesside workers.

General trade union GMB announced it would also ballot its members at other Corus plants on industrial action.

Irish Independent

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