Jobs at Rugby’s Alstom site could be under threat

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Jobs at Rugby’s former Alstom site could be under threat after new owners General Electric announced plans to axe thousands of workers.

Up to 600 workers could go at former Alstom sites in Rugby Bristol, Dartford, Stafford, and Newcastle after GE announced plans earlier in January to axe up to 6,500 jobs across Europe.

Britain’s largest union, Unite, is joining forces with its European counterparts in a bid to save employees from the cuts.

Unite representatives agreed to ‘refuse all job redundancies’ and ‘contest all strategies that would have the direct consequence to lose jobs.’

Rugby MP Mark Pawsey said it was disappointing news for people in the borough.

“When I heard about of the reports of GE’s plans to reorganise its businesses in Europe I contacted the company,” he said.

“This is clearly very disappointing news for some of my constituents and I was keen to hear from the company about the support that would be offered to those affected by the changes.”

Mr Pawsey said he had been assured by GE that the majority of job losses would be achieved through voluntary redundancies.

He said: “It is a matter of regret that when business acquisitions take place it can result in duplication of roles which I understand is the case in this very difficult situation.

“I have been assured by GE that the majority of job losses will be achieved through voluntary redundancies and that the company will look to re-deploy other members of staff who are affected and provide support for anyone who loses their job.”

Unite regional office Zoe Mayou said: “We have major concerns that GE is cutting too far, too fast and leaving the newly merged company exposed to future skills shortages. The workers facing redundancy are highly skilled with years of knowledge and expertise. They care deeply about the company and have grown increasingly concerned about the business case underpinning GE’s restructure.

“Over the coming weeks we will joining up with our European counterparts to press senior management for greater clarity over their plans.”