PAID-OFF WORKERS’ SLAP IN THE FACE
Chicken plant asks them back – on less wages
Workers who were recently made redundant at Cambuslang’s 2 Sisters factory have been asked back to do shifts at the plant – on LESS pay.
The chicken plant was originally supposed to close at the end of August, with the loss of more than 400 jobs.
However, issues with the company’s plant down south prompted an ongoing postponement of the closure, with a number of workers offered extra cash to stay on beyond August.
Now it has emerged the postponement could continue until the end of the year – and former employees were shocked after receiving text messages asking if they would return to do shifts.
Text messages seen by the Reformer offer £7.83 as the rate of pay, plus a bonus of £500 for a month’s work. The workers originally kept on are earning £10 as the hourly rate of pay – and bonuses as high as £2000 in some cases.
One former employee, who dealt with deliveries at the site, said: “I was made redundant at the beginning of August.
“I was asked if I wanted to stay on but I declined as the given date of closure was August 31. I have since learned that the factory is still open and I’ve received a message from a recruitment agency asking if I would like to return.”
Rutherglen’s MP has labelled the situation a “complete shambles”, while workers union UNITE slated the plant’s owners for their “shabby” actions.
Linda Pollock-Wilson, the trade union’s regional industrial officer, said: “The employers approach to the closure of this site has been every bit as shambolic as it was disingenuous during the consultation process.
“The consultation was a sham from
start to finish, with the decision to close the site having been made by the employer long before the consultation process began.
“To add insult to injury, the 2 Sisters Food Group offered some employees the opportunity to stay on beyond the intended closure date for a substantial additional financial incentive.
“We now find that some employees who have left the site have not only been denied that opportunity to earn extra money but are now being contacted by text and asked to come back as agency workers – on inferior terms and conditions.
“For the record, this has all been done without Unite’s knowledge, which is why we’re seeking protective awards on behalf of our members as compensation for the shabby way in which their loyal service to the employer has been rewarded.”
Ged Killen MP said:“This is a complete shambles that could have been avoided if the concerns raised by Unite the Union and workers at 2 Sisters had been listened to.
“The site and equipment in Cambuslang may have been out of date, but the workforce was highly skilled and concerns about the capacity of other factories to meet the demands of the existing contract were raised repeatedly.
“We’re now in a situation where different workers have left 2 Sisters under different circumstances.
“Some left on or prior to the original closure date, others were offered incentives to work on for longer, and some have been invited back under agency contracts with different pay and conditions.
“In their haste to get this factory closed, 2 Sisters have failed to pay due attention to the concerns of their most important asset, the employees.
“We should have a commitment from 2 Sisters that any former employee invited back as agency staff will be offered the same pay and conditions or better.”
2 Sisters did not respond to requests to comment,
Earlier this year, 2 Sisters bosses told Cambuslang workers the only way to keep their jobs was to be redeployed to Norwich – 380 miles away. The factory doors were supposed to close in September.
In their haste to get the factory closed, 2 Sisters failed to pay attention to their most important asset, the employees Ged Killen, MP
Shutting up shop 2 Sisters plant was earmarked for closure in September
Shambles Ged Killen MP blasted process