By Ben Simmons
BAE Systems' decision to end manufacturing at the Brough factory in Yorkshire has been branded a ‘disgraceful dereliction of duty to a world class workforce.’
Last night BAE Systems’ management unilaterally ended consultation with Unite on the business case for ending manufacturing at Brough. Despite there being a number of options on the table, including one which would have kept the capability to manufacture Hawk fighter jets at Brough, the company has opted for the most extreme choice to close the site, putting 850 jobs at risk.
"BAE Systems has displayed a disgraceful dereliction of duty to a world class workforce,” said the union’s Ian Waddell. “Management has chosen to take the most extreme decision by unnecessarily opting to close Brough entirely. This means the loss of vital manufacturing capabilities and skills.
"The closure of Brough will have a devastating impact on the local economy. The area is already an unemployment blackspot and today's announcement makes the situation significantly worse.
"Unfortunately because of weak employment laws we are fighting to save manufacturing skills and jobs at BAE Systems with one hand tied behind our backs. The UK's lax interpretation of EU rules on consulting workers on restructuring, means employers can get away with taking short-term decisions which affect jobs and skills in the long term.