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United Biscuits' workers spread their message 'Stop our jobs going abroad' in job-cuts protest

29th April 2009

Photo opportunity

Where: United Biscuits, Binns Road, Liverpool

When: Thursday 30th April at 12.00 noon

Workers at United Biscuits’ Liverpool Binns Road will wear t-shirts bearing the slogan “Stop our jobs going abroad” to work tomorrow (Thursday 30th April) in protest over plans to move Liverpool jobs to India.

Employees facing redundancy will also hold a lunchtime protest outside the Binns Road site in a bid to retain 55 jobs in Liverpool and 170 jobs nationwide while United Biscuits makes its final decision this week.

Unite says that the company has failed to properly consult with the union or with workers over proposals to move Liverpool jobs to India. At a meeting held earlier this month between Unite representatives and UB UK Finance Director, Robin Brown and Human Resources Manager, Gail Adams, the company still failed to provide vital information to Unite and workers.
Unite national officer, Jennie Formby, said: “Our members are standing up to United Biscuits bosses in their fight to save jobs and secure their future.

“United Biscuits has made it abundantly clear that the company has no intention of entering into meaningful consultation with us until after a decision has been made, and that will be too late. And of course, United Biscuits’ private equity owners, Blackstone and PAI, have no interest other than in maximising the return on their investment; the loyalty and long service of the workforce means nothing to them.

“Our message to the company is simple - the trade unions in United Biscuits are not prepared to sit back and let decisions be made that can wreck communities, and we will use every weapon available to us to resist the offshoring of these jobs to India.”
GMB national officer, Allan Black, said: “The GMB fully supports the fight for the workers at United Biscuits and urges the company to enter into immediate negotiations into this issue.

“We have made our concerns known to the company very clearly and see this offshoring exercise as a wedge to open the door to make more of our members redundant.”

Local Merseyside MPs, including Jane Kennedy, Maria Eagle, Joe Benton, Eddie O’Hara, George Howarth and Louise Ellman gave their support to workers at the House of Common on Tuesday 21st April.  MP’s agreed to seek urgent meetings with United Biscuits' bosses over outsourcing plans.

Over 3,000 people across Merseyside have already signed up to support the campaign petition to stop United Biscuits moving Liverpool jobs to India. Support the workers and sign the petition today at: www.unitetheunion.org/northwest.

On 16th May 2009, Unite will hold a march through Birmingham. This will be the centrepiece of the 'Unite for Jobs' campaign. The March for Jobs will spotlight the need for urgent assistance to defend jobs.

To see what the Unite for Jobs demands are or for information on the march visit: www.action.unitetheunion.org/campaigns/uniteforjobs

ENDS

For further information please contact Karen Viquerat on 07768 931316.
Notes to editors:

United Biscuits brands include:

McVities digestives, Penguins, Jaffa Cakes, Jacob’s Club, Carr’s, Jacob’s cream Crackers, Twiglets, Hula Hoops, Skips, Mini Cheddars, McCoy’s and KP Nuts.

United Biscuits is the: 

  • Number 1 maker and marketer of biscuits in the UK; 
  • The number 1 maker and marketer of nuts in the UK; 
  • The second largest manufacturer and marketer of savoury snacks in the UK; 
  • The second largest manufacturer and maker of biscuits in France; in the Netherlands and in Belgium.

United Biscuits Topco Limited is a portfolio company owned jointly by private equity Blackstone and PAI.


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