Union leader Mick Lynch has offered his support to Seagate workers seeking union recognition amid fears of job losses at the Derry manufacturing site.
Speculation has been mounting in recent days about the impact of the hard drive manufacturer’s “restructuring plan” on its Derry factory, which employs more than 1,000 workers.
Mick Lynch, the general secretary of the RMT union, who rose to fame after his witty interactions with TV presenters and journalists in Britain’s railway strikes went viral, congratulated Unite’s efforts to gain formal recognition at the union company .
Read more: Latest Seagate: Union promises to keep fighting for recognition
The Unite union has sought official recognition following a “member-led” organizing campaign over the past six months at the site in the city’s Springtown area.
Meanwhile, an announcement on how the company’s restructuring plans will affect workers at the Derry site is expected in the near future.
(Image: Google Maps)
Politicians, including Mayor Sandra Duffy, have demanded an emergency meeting with the company’s management.
Speaking to Belfast Live ahead of a May Day rally on Saturday, Mr Lynch suggested the union campaign at Seagate is an example of working-class communities beginning to “awaken”.
“What we have said in Britain for the ‘enough is enough’ campaign, which we would like to see rolled out in Ireland, is that we need to wake up working-class communities,” he said.
“That sounds like it’s happening, in fairness, at Seagate, done by Unite. So congratulations to them. “We need to wake up working class communities so that they can organize not just through political parties, but so that they can organize themselves and find solidarity and strength – and then things like the Derry Trade Council and other community organizations can give back. in there.
“These companies will do everything they can to make more profit. In the face of that enormous economic power – oligarchy, if you will – people must unite. And the unions are the best resource for that, to give them a voice and give them the tools to stand up and rebalance their workplace.”
He added: “I fully support the Seagate campaign, and then the other unionization campaigns, we do it ourselves all the time.
“And often it is the most exploited workers, the ones who are outsourced to these facility companies who do the cleaning during security during those jobs, who are considered peripheral, who are most exploited, while the people who work in-house have tend to get a better deal. “So we need to make sure we reach all employees, regardless of their background or whatever their status in the company or organization.”
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