Remploy: Government Sacks 1500 Disabled Workers

7th March 2012

It was announced today that Remploy will close 36 of its 54 factories, with compulsory redundancy for more than 1,752 people, of which 1,518 are disabled.

In Wales, seven out of nine Remploy factories have been earmarked for closure, including Swansea.

Phil Davies, GMB National Secretary for GMB Members working at Remploy said, "This decision to sack 1,752 people in 36 Remploy factories across the country is one of the worst decision that this discredited coalition government has taken since coming to office.

"The decision to close these 36 factories followed by the other 18 factories in due course is an attack on the most vulnerable members of our society. Thousands of disabled workers will now pay with their jobs for the incompetence of this government and other public sector bodies that did not take advantage of EU procurement rules that allow supported manufacturing jobs for disabled workers. These factories have lacked support for years and have never been properly loaded with enough work to make them economically viable.

"I never thought that I would live to see the day that an organisation set up to provide sustainable employment for disabled people being shut down.

"It is a disgrace that a number of large charities, set up to help disabled people and run by very well paid, able bodied people have misled the British public and provided the government with the cover to undertake this act of sacking disabled workers. Shame on them."

Kevin Hepworth, Unite National Officer added, “GMB and the other trade unions in Remploy will not stand by and allow this attack to go unanswered.

"The next step is for a substantial period of consultation. Shop Stewards from all the factories will be meeting on the 26/27th March to set out a plan of action."

Swansea Trades Council said, "Solidarity from Swansea Trades Council to all Remploy workers facing fight to save their jobs. The government has announced 36 out of 54 plants are to close, including 7 of 9 in Wales. All trade unionists and anti cuts campaigners must immediately get behind Remploy trade unionists."

Secretary of Cardiff Trades Council, Ramon Corria said "I offer our solidarity and continued support to all sisters and brothers employed by Remploy, especially on this of all days!"

This is a breaking story. More information to follow in the coming days.

Please sign the petition to stop the closure of Remploy Factories and the privatisation of Remploy Employment Services.

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