Here’s why the unions are up in arms
Unite, the country’s largest union, will meet with senior management at pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), following the news that the company announced a significant change of investment direction in the UK, including a potential 240 job losses at the firm’s Worthing plant in Sussex.
Unite regional officer Mick Pollek said:“This is both extremely concerning news – and potentially devastating for the workers and their families as it appeared that GSK was investing significantly at the Worthing operation, and now these job losses are suddenly announced.”
Unite national officer for the pharmaceutical industry Tony Devlin said: “We will be meeting with the UK senior management next week to discuss the reasons behind this announcement which has come as a significant blow for Unite members and looking at the detailed business case for these proposed redundancies and changes in national strategy.
“These are skilled jobs that are under threat and we can’t afford to lose such manufacturing posts, with the economic challenges of Brexit looming.
“We will be fighting very hard against any proposal for compulsory redundancies and will be offering the union’s maximum support to our members in the days and weeks ahead at what is a very challenging time.”
Unite has about 1,000 members nationally within GSK, including 185 members at Worthing working in the antibiotics’ operation and the nearby sachet production section for antibiotics. Unite also understands the GSK site in Slough in Berkshire, where the union has 18 members, will close.
Unite officials will be meeting the Worthing reps on Monday (24 July) to discuss the situation in-depth.