Walsall foundry workers in protest over pay

Workers at a Walsall foundry staged a protest outside the gates of the firm over claims they are being forced into pay cuts.

Staff protesting outside Chamberlin & Hill in Walsall
Staff protesting outside Chamberlin & Hill in Walsall

Unite union claim its members from Chamberlin & Hill will be up to £200 a week worse off due to changes to terms and conditions being imposed on the workforce.

They staged a socially distanced demonstration outside the foundry in Chuckery Road.

Union representatives said they had put forward counter proposals that could have achieved the same level of savings but these were rejected. Officials said they were also now preparing to hold an industrial action ballot in opposition to the company’s actions.

The union is also calling for more government support for the manufacturing companies such as Chamberlin & Hill, which produces castings for the automotive industry.

Inevitable

Unite regional officer Caroline Crolley said: “Chamberlin & Hill is forcing its workforce into poverty as a result of instigating huge pay cuts. This demonstration will show the company just how upset and angry workers are as they will simply be not able to make ends meet.

“As a result Unite has no option but to move to a full industrial action ballot. While the actions of Chamberlin & Hill are totally unacceptable it must not be forgotten that many sections of the manufacturing sector have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Unless the government provides far more direct financial support to the manufacturing sector then further huge job losses and attacks on workers’ pay and conditions are inevitable.”

Unite has also launched its ‘SOS for Jobs’ campaign calling for Whitehall to mirror European nations and increase the level of help to the manufacturing sector during Covid.

Unite regional secretary for the West Midlands Annmarie Kilcline said: “This demonstration and Unite’s SOS for Jobs campaign establishes how Unite is totally committed to protecting jobs and not allowing workers to be sold out.”

Chamberlin & Hill has been contacted and asked for a comment.

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