Sign the petition to defend Bombardier jobs!

bbThe government must act to defend jobs and skills at Bombardier in Belfast

The UK is the second biggest Boeing client globally. Wecall on the government to follow-through on their words and use their leverage to defend Northern Ireland jobs from US protectionism; to compel Boeing to withdraw their meritless case and lift the threat hanging over thousands of Northern Ireland workers.

More than 4,000 aerospace workers are employed by Bombardier in Northern Ireland; sustaining a further 20,000 in the local economy. These jobs are threatened by the 300% import tariffs on Bombardiers C Series proposed by President Trump’s administration on behalf of Boeing.

Please sign this petition.  At 100,000 signatures, the topic will be considered for debate in Parliament.

Note: Only British citizens or UK residents can sign.

Click here to sign the petition.

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Department of Infrastructure failure to address workforce pay inequality leaves winter service understaffed

Gareth ScottTransport NI failure to respond to union’s warnings about consequences of pay disparity blamed on absence of Infrastructure Minister

A fixed ‘rate for the job’ for road gritting duties is only way to ensure continued equality of cover for all parts of Northern Ireland

January 17th: Unite Regional Officer, Gareth Scott, explained his union’s efforts to avoid understaffing of winter service cover and the need for Transport NI (formerly Roads Service NI) to adopt a fair pay policy to sustain winter service provision:

“We understand that rosters to cover gritting duties are proving inadequate in some areas of Northern Ireland, in particular those in rural areas of Down and Antrim. As a result gritting has not been completed to standard and road users are being left to fend for themselves on dangerous roads.

“Unite has repeatedly has raised with management workforce concerns about the sustainability of the current pay regime in order to avoid this situation arising. At present, payment for those who do this work is calculated on the basis of a fixed overtime rate which means that members of management and even other Department of Infrastructure services are being paid considerably more to perform the same work as our members in Transport NI. Continue reading

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Bombardier workforce to organise gate meetings over C Series tariff threat to jobs

Jackie PollockWorkers to gather for union meetings between noon and 1pm on Thursday [January 18th] at gates of all five Bombardier sites

Decision by US International Trade Commission on proposed 292% C Series tariffs due to be made public within next fortnight

January 16th: Unite Regional Secretary, Jackie Pollock, who will address workers at a gate meeting inside the main Bombardier site at Airport Road on Thursday coming said:

“Workers here are hugely concerned that 292% import duties on the C Series are likely to be rubber-stamped by the US International Trade Commission. This decision seems all the more likely given that the UK government last week effectively raised the white flag by announcing that they expected the tariffs would be imposed and placing their hopes in overturning them at the World Trade Organisation. That process is likely to take years – during which time the damage to jobs here in Northern Ireland will have been done.

“These tariffs effectively quadruple the price of the C Series in the US, shutting Bombardier out of the largest market globally for the aircraft. That poses an immediate and serious threat to every single job at Bombardier in Northern Ireland and by extension to those tens of thousands of workers in their supply chain and those who benefit from the boost wages provide our economy. Continue reading

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Unilateral closure of Irish Life pension scheme may trigger industrial action

unite-white-out-of-redIreland’s largest pension provider accused of ‘prioritising balance sheet over workers’ 

Move to DC scheme will hit around 700 Unite members

January 15th:  Unite today announced that it is holding a series of consultative meetings with members in pensions giant Irish Life prior to balloting for industrial action in response to the company’s unilateral decision to close its Defined Benefit pension scheme as of June 30th.  Unite represents approximately 1000 workers in Irish Life, of whom around 700 are in the DB pension scheme.  Overall, the scheme has around 3000 members, including pensioners and deferred members.  The scheme has never been in deficit and currently has a surplus of approximately €200 million, with assets of around €1.1 billion.

Commenting, Unite Regional Coordinating Officer Richie Browne said:

Continue reading

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Carillion social housing maintenance workers’ unanimously vote demanding direct employment by Northern Ireland Housing Executive

Jackie Pollock for distributionHundreds of Carillion workers show up to Unite regional offices for mass meeting after being instructed by management to return home after presenting for work 

Unite demands direct employment as best mechanism to protect workers and tenants

January 15th: Unite the union Regional Secretary, Jackie Pollock spoke after addressing a mass meeting of his union’s membership in Carillion following business’ collapse:

“Carillion employs approximately five hundred workers in Northern Ireland, almost half of whom are employed in social housing maintenance work for the Housing Executive. In response to this morning’s announcement that Carillion had gone into liquation, Unite organised a mass meeting of their workforce for social housing maintenance contracts. We provided the workers present with an update on our actions to defend jobs and to secure their backing for our strategy going forwards.

“Unite has been aware of the threats hanging over Carillion for some time and we successful sought a meeting a number of months ago with the Chief Executive of the NI Housing Executive at which we demanded all jobs be safeguarded in the event of a collapse. At that time we received assurances that in the event of a liquidation the contract would be offered to an alternative operator so that there would be no discontinuity of employment or of the maintenance services for tenants. Continue reading

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Private sector cherry-picking of express bus routes threatens integrity of NI public transport


Public transport facing ‘perfect storm’ of threats as Hannon Coach targets profit-making bus routes across Northern Ireland

License application will undermine cross-subsidisation model sustaining Northern Ireland’s public transport system

January 11th: Unite the union’s Regional Secretary, Jackie Pollock, called on the Department of Infrastructure reject an application from County Antrim-based private sector Hannon Coach for a license to operate express services to a number of regional centres:

“This application by Hannon Coach threatens to undermine public transport services across Northern Ireland and poses a direct threat to the terms and conditions of our members in Ulsterbus and throughout Translink. This private operator seeks to displace Translink on nine of its most profitable routes – including express services between Newcastle, Armagh, Cookstown, Dungannon, Enniskillen, Omagh and Coleraine.

“Privateers are not interested in the public service routes. It is notable that they are focussing their efforts on towns without a rail link – this is driven by a desire to make profit at the expense of Translink’s Goldliner service in the publicly-funded bus centres in Belfast and these regional centres. They have no interest in services dedicated to students or the infirm. Should they succeed with their cherry-picking, the cost from their greed will be the undermining of Northern Ireland’s underfunded public transport system”, Mr Pollock concluded. Continue reading

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