ITF and ETF condemn P&O mass sacking and outsourcing

Global and European maritime unions have expressed anger and condemnation at breaking news that ferry operator P&O Ferries will move to sack its UK-based seafaring workforce and outsource their jobs to non-union, agency workers.

Affiliates of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) and European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) were informed that P&O Ferries had paused services “in preparation for a company announcement” earlier today. By afternoon the company had announced to media that 800 staff that work on its vessels were sacked with immediate effect.

تويتر \ Socialist Economic B (SocEconB@)

Unions RMT and Nautilus have instructed their members to remain onboard vessels and are demanding the immediate intervention from the UK Government to stop the scandalous outsourcing of approximately 800 jobs with no notice.

“The news today is shocking. In the strongest possible terms, we condemn P&O. We will not accept its move to axe the jobs of its loyal seafaring workforce with no notice. We all must question how a company can literally sack its entire workforce on less than 24 hours’ notice,” said ITF General Secretary Stephen Cotton.

ITF general secretary Stephen Cotton at Davos 2020 | ITF Seafarers

“Our unions are awaiting further information from P&O and DP World – its major shareholder – but the ITF and ETF stand ready to mobilize support to defend these workers’ jobs. We’re deeply concerned at reports that busloads of the non-union crew and ‘handcuff trained’ security are sitting in Dover and Hull, waiting to remove and replace the British-based seafarers.”

“We are shocked and angry that P&O, a company that pocketed thousands of pounds of UK taxpayer’s money during the pandemic, intends to forcefully remove crews,” said Cotton

RMT issued a statement today urging the company to protect jobs amid the speculation. The union said it has instructed members to stay on board their vessels once or risk being “locked out” of their jobs

Nautilus International has said the news was “a betrayal of British workers”, with their General secretary Mark Dickinson slamming the company’s behaviour and pledging to fight the job cuts: “There was no consultation and no notice given by P&O. Be assured the full resources of Nautilus International stand ready to act in defence of our members. We have instructed our members to stay on board until further notice.”

Image:Livia Spera steps up into acting general secretary role

“Unions across the world stand with these workers today. It is truly staggering that at a time when the world is just starting to recover from a pandemic, with a war on our doorstep, P&O can move to sack its entire workforce,” said Livia Spera, ETF General Secretary.

“Maritime unions globally will do everything we can to stop these appalling jobs cuts. We will lobby P&O shareholders, investors, and customers to demand P&O reverse its aggressive and callous outsourcing attempt. These seafarers’ rights have clearly been violated – and it is astonishing that this can happen in major developed countries like the UK,”

“Instead of ambushing their workers, we strongly call on P&O to urgently meet with the UK unions to find a justifiable solution and end this clear abuse of these workers’ rights,” said Spera.

Show More
Back to top button
error: Content is Protected !!
%d bloggers like this: