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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 November 2015

Workers dig in for fight over job threat

A JCB worker

News that up to 290 JCB permanent shop floor workers could be made redundant was leaked to media sources on 4 November before the workers themselves were informed.

This is as a result of plummeting global sales of construction equipment and follows the axing of 700 shop floor agency workers since June this year along with 400 staff redundancies.

Many at JCB are saying that this situation is as bad as 2008 when the world economy crashed and thousands of JCB workers were made redundant as a result. Despite this JCB still made a profit of 29 million and has never made a loss since its inception in 1945.


This April JCB announced its second best annual profit margin of over 300 million. From this Tory donor Lord Bamford was paid a dividend of 60 million at the same time as the staff redundancies.

Lord Anthony Bamford and family, who own JCB, are the second richest people in the West Midlands with a stash of 3.1 billion, they come 29th in the Times rich list nationally.

JCB workers are angry that these cuts are taking place when it is obvious that Lord Bamford is drowning in money. The GMB who represent shop floor workers have responded to this situation as they did in 2008 by concession bargaining, proposing ideas that will lead to a deterioration of existing terms and conditions in the hope that this will reduce the number of redundancies.

In 2008 at the suggestion of the GMB, shop floor workers voted to go on reduced hours for six months with a resultant pay cut, believing this would prevent redundancies. It turned out that hundreds more

workers were made redundant after this agreement, meaning workers are now saying they will not fall for it again.


These redundancies can be fought. The GMB should link up with other struggles such as the steel workers who are demonstrating against job cuts and public sector workers like the junior doctors.

There is no need for redundancies. Last week's issue of the Socialist put forward the socialist case for nationalisation of the steel industry outlining the demand for steel in building the infrastructure projects which would also need the machines that are built at JCB.

The call for nationalisation among steel workers has received an overwhelming response. This should be the central demand of the GMB at JCB as the only solution to prevent redundancies.

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In The Socialist 11 November 2015:

Socialist Party news and analysis

Bail out the NHS

Socialist policies get results!

Government departments agree to hack budgets

Tories open the door to further rises in tuition fees

Fury as India's leader Modi plans to visit Britain

Buyers queue overnight for 'affordable' London homes

School kids must walk hands behind backs says head

Them & Us

What we saw

Socialist Party feature

Socialism 2015: Socialist ideas back on the agenda

International socialist news and analysis

USA: Kshama Sawant re-elected

UK trade props up Kazakh dictatorship

Workplace news and analysis

Unions should keep independence to lead fight to defend Corbyn

CWU rep sacked

Hull council in aggressive attack on trade unions

Step up the fight for trade union rights

Huge support for socialist in Northern Ireland union election

Workers dig in for fight over job threat

Workplace news in brief

Socialist Party comments and reviews

Can biomass energy be part of a socialist plan of production?

Revolutionary themes in games

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Save steel jobs

Jeremy Corbyn visits Leeds Uni

Southampton council: cutters or Corbynistas?

Derby school support staff: fight against pay cuts continues

Fight now on to save disabled respite centre


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