Birmingham Mail, 17th January, 2009
Up to 1800 production jobs are under threat at Jaguar Land Rover if workers do not agree to a pay freeze and a major new round of cutbacks, it was revealed today. Workers at the crisis-hit group have been told shifts will have to be cut further and pay frozen to help the Tata-owned group ride out the worst sales environment for decades.
Unions have been presented with a range of cutbacks – including 500 voluntary redundancies – to stave off further major job losses at Solihull and Castle Bromwich. But if they cannot reach agreement, it is understood up to 1800 jobs could face the axe across Jaguar Land Rover in the biggest wave of job losses to hit the manufacturer in this downturn.
Management and unions have declined to discuss the detail of the proposed cutbacks after an agreed statement was issued which confirmed further savings were being sought. But a Land Rover worker, said: “There have been briefings from shop stewards and they have told us what the situation is. We have been asked to go on a four-day week, we will only get 10 per cent of shift pay, we will have no holiday bonus, there will be no rise in November and there will be 500 voluntary redundancies. If that is not accepted, there will be 1800 redundancies across JLR.”
It is understood unions have agreed to canvass the workforce over two weeks before any agreement is reached. Unions and management say the talks are confidential and neither party will be adding to the joint statement issued after Thursday’s emergency talks.
The statement said: “The company and unions met for an update on the business and to discuss the urgent need to reduce costs in the light of the credit crunch. The company and the unions have agreed to work jointly to seek alternative ways to reduce costs and avoid the need for any further redundancies.”
JLR has already announced up to 1900 job losses over the last few months, including 600 voluntary job losses last autumn, 450 management and agency positions this week and 850 agency staff in the run-up to Christmas.
[Source: Birmingham Mail]
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