Jackie Pollock says Unite members determined to save jobs and skills
Solidarity rally planned for tomorrow at noon
Workers at Harland and Wolff – which faces closure on Wednesday following the failure by its troubled owners to find a new buyer for the facility – are this evening (Monday) making preparations to spend the night in the iconic shipyard. They have invited British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to make Harland and Wolff his first port of call during the PM visit to Belfast this week.
A rally in support of the workers will take place tomorrow (Tuesday) at noon at the main gate (Dee Street).
Unite Regional Secretary Jackie Pollock has been standing with the workers since this morning, and expressed full support for their determination to defend not only their jobs, but Northern Ireland’s skillbase into the future:
“Harland and Wolff’s greatest asset is its workers, and this evening they feel they have no other way to highlight the imminent threat to the yard and to Northern Ireland’s skillbase but to remain here. Unite fully supports our members in their decision.
“As Boris Johnson prepares to visit Belfast for the first time as Prime Minister, workers at Harland and Wolff have extended an invitation to him to make the shipyard his first port of call. Not only will he be greeted with traditional Northern Irish hospitality, but the workers would welcome an opportunity to show him the facility, explain the role it could still play in British shipbuilding, and outline immediate business prospects. It should not be forgotten that only three years ago Harland and Wolff supported approximately 2,500 jobs directly, and thousands more indirectly.
“Neither local management, nor the yard’s owners, nor the British Government have so far been prepared to take control of the situation and ensure that Harland and Wolff does not end up liquidated and sold off, bit by bit, to the highest bidder. This evening workers are making preparations to spend the night in the yard, and are steadfast in their determination to save their jobs and Northern Ireland’s skillbase”, Jackie Pollock concluded.