N-workers to decide on further industrial action today

WORKERS at two power stations in Suffolk will make a decision todayabout holding further industrial action in a row over the use of foreign workers.

Richard Smith

WORKERS at two power stations in Suffolk will make a decision todayabout holding further industrial action in a row over the use of foreign workers.

Sub contractors employed by companies working on the decommissioning of Sizewell A, and routine work at Sizewell B, walked out yesterday in a show of solidarity for energy employees at a Lincolnshire oil refinery.

There was also a protest in Milford Haven as the dispute over the use of foreign workers in Britain continued.


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At Sizewell a picket line was briefly manned yesterdaybut in view of the weather conditions it was decided to limit it to an hour.

It is estimated that up to 70 sub contractors, including scaffolders, employed at the adjoining power stations were involved in the walk-out.

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Between 30 and 40 workers downed tools at Sizewell B, and between 25 and 30 also took action at Sizewell A.

Sub contractors turning up for work at 8am were expecting to complete their 10-hour shift although some said they did think some sort of action would be taken.

Meetings were called and it was decided to take ''wildcat'' action with immediate effect.

One irate sub contractor said: ''There should be British jobs for British people - but instead they are bringing in foreign workers and giving them jobs.

''Somebody has to take a stand over this and this is what we are doing.''

A British Energy spokesman confirmed that action took place among the workforce of two companies providing labour at Sizewell B.

He added that health and safety issues at the nuclear power plant were not affected.

''This does not affect the operation or safety of Sizewell,'' he said.

Workmen involved in the dispute say they do not have an issue with foreign people coming to this country to work, but they are angry that British people are losing out on jobs particularly during the recession.

At the South Hook LNG terminal in Milford Haven, 500 workers protested yesterday and many of them had staged a similar protest on Friday.

Danny Melia, Unite's senior shop steward at the plant, said: ''This is not a race issue. We just want British workers to have a fair crack of the whip.

''They should exhaust all the available British labour first before turning to foreign workers.''

richard.smith@eadt.co.uk

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