NEW STRIKE HITS CAR GIANTS
By David Jack
Thousands of car workers at giant car factories in the Midlands will kick off the New Year , with a strike. The 24-hour walkout ,over the industrial Relations Bill ,is likely to shut down firms and force factories to lay off thousands. Today’s stoppage has been called by the Birmingham Trades Council and more than 40,000 are expected at a rally in the city centre. Car chiefs always expect high absenteeism on New Year’s Day with up-to 15 per cent of the labour force normally staying away.
LAST NIGHT more than 3,500 night-shift workers at British Leyland’s Longbridge, Birmingham, plant failed to turn up for work. Production of four models was brought to a standstill and 900 vehicles worth £500,000 were lost .
Workers at the Austin Morris plant, Rovers and Pressed Steel Fisher are expected to defy management warnings of the dangers of joining a political strike.