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From: The Socialist issue 880, 25 November 2015: Back doctors' strikes

Search site for keywords: Steel - Government - Nationalisation - Jobs - Yorkshire - Workers - Union - Teesside - Strike - Wales - Protest - Socialist Party - South Yorkshire - Trade unions - Scunthorpe - Economy - Manufacturing - Jeremy Corbyn - Cuts - Sheffield - Scotland - Solidarity

Steelworkers demand government action to Save Our Steel

Steel workers march in Sheffield, November 2015, photo by Sam Morecroft

Steel workers march in Sheffield, November 2015, photo by Sam Morecroft   (Click to enlarge)

Hundreds of steelworkers from across all the steelmaking heartlands of Britain - Wales, Scotland and the north of England - took to the streets of Sheffield on 21 November to demand government action to save the steel industry.

Angry steelworkers and their families descended on South Yorkshire carrying banners on the Save Our Steel march in a colourful and noisy protest.

Thousands of job cuts have been announced in Teesside and Scunthorpe with unions and workers expecting more to come.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "The crisis in British steel isn't over. One in six steelworkers face losing their jobs. Britain desperately needs a long-term industrial plan, but ministers have refused to commit to one."

"The closure of factories will devastate surrounding communities and cause jobs losses throughout the supply chain. The chancellor's 'Northern Powerhouse' has to be more than a slogan for a party conference."

Rob Middlemiss, chair of the Multi Union Tata Steel at Skinningrove in North Yorkshire, took part in the rally and said the scale of job losses would be devastating for communities.

"For every steelworker that loses their job, two or three more people lose it in the supply chain," he said. "If there's 30,000 people left in steel, we're talking 100,000 affected, so the economy in those areas is going to be decimated."

Nationalisation

The Socialist Party has campaigned all along for the steel trade unions and Jeremy Corbyn to demand nationalisation of the steel industry as the only way to save jobs now and secure the future for the steel industry. And the call for nationalisation is growing.

The unions shouldn't wait for any more job losses. They should set a date for a one day strike across the industry and appeal to workers in manufacturing and support industries to show solidarity.

And they should demand nationalisation of the steel industry now.







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