Sad day for Scottish Workers

  oresome 18:01 23 Oct 13
Locked

It seems the owners of the Grangemouth petro-chemical plant weren't bluffing when they told workers accept the new deal or we close.

Closure also puts at risk the adjacent refinery and between the two plants are one of Scotland's largest employers and a major contributor to the economy.

No one likes to accept a pay cut or worsening terms and conditions, but the union should have had a full understanding of the companies accounts to advise their members of the correct course of action.

  morddwyd 20:00 23 Oct 13

Not much of a union supporter usually, but this company, controlled by a Swiss resident with much Chinese involvement, was determined to get millions in subsidies from the government and when they couldn't get it looked for an excuse to close.

They knew that if they pressed the unions hard enough they would get the excuse.

Poor Christmas (no apologies, FE)for a lot of people.

(Sits back and waits for FM!)

  fourm member 08:23 24 Oct 13

morddwyd

Don't hold your breath.

This is a very complex situation and all I know about it is what has been in the media.

After stating that a 2 day strike at the refinery would collapse the Scottish economy, bring about a new banking crisis, create a plague of locusts and be a cure for cancer, the media is now saying that, in spite of being out of production for over a week, there is no shortage of oil products anywhere.

  oresome 09:31 24 Oct 13

I know little of the detail but I think the crux of the matter is that we have an over supply of refining capacity at present in Europe. Those plants with the highest running costs or needing capital investment will then come under pressure to reduce costs to justify any investment.

  onthelimit1 09:43 24 Oct 13

Seems to me the Unite union got what it deserved - they were told that if the deal wasn't accepted then the plant would close. Despite this, they advised the workforce to reject the deal.

Better to have a job on less pay than no job at all, I'd have thought.

  Pine Man 10:36 24 Oct 13

None of the admin people wanted a strike and a number of manual workers accepted that a freeze in pay and changes to pensions were no worse than the effects of the austerity measures on the general population.

The unions are supposed to be there for the benefit of their members and, not for the first time, they have screwed them!

  Mr Mistoffelees 10:59 24 Oct 13

"the media is now saying that, in spite of being out of production for over a week, there is no shortage of oil products anywhere."

That's because, so far, only the petrochemicals plant has closed with the refinery remaining open and, presumably, still supplying fuel.

  Mr Mistoffelees 11:15 24 Oct 13

"the media is now saying that, in spite of being out of production for over a week, there is no shortage of oil products anywhere."

That's because, so far, only the petrochemicals plant has closed with the refinery remaining open and, presumably, still supplying fuel.

  Mr Mistoffelees 11:18 24 Oct 13

Something rather odd just happened. I typed a response to another thread in Helproom, clicked post and was bounced back to this thread, to find my last post duplicated after a 16 minute gap!

  fourm member 11:40 24 Oct 13

Mr Mistoffelees

'the refinery remaining open'

Yes, the refinery is open but it is not in production.

'Swiss owner Ineos halted production last week at the 210,000-barrels-per-day refinery'

  spuds 13:14 24 Oct 13

I think with any major employer, the workforce and perhaps any union support must take consideration were bluff or action is wise or operative.

Many of these major companies have massive expert advice on obtaining funding, and some of the business plans are based on funding being made available, whether by government, banking, EU or further private equity. And perhaps the Chinese are getting well versed on this subject?.

Perhaps off subject, but a number of years ago, a friend of mine was the main union convenor in a expanding fairly well known printing company. It started out as a one man and family business and expanded over the years. The father gave the reigns of the business to one of the son's, and with that came a major move and further expansion programme. Every year there was the usually 'pay rise' discussions, and after this major expansion, the worker's were informed that there would be no pay rise that year, and next years would depend on circumstances at the time.

The worker's and the union was having none of it and threatened strike action. Didn't work, because the boss (the son of the founder) informed everyone that the company was deeply in debt, and was now virtually owned by outside sources and not the family any more. The whip in the tail, was when he got all the workforce together, and asked how people would survive if the business closed. He pointed out that he had other business interests including owning and running a farm, so loss of his boss job, wouldn't make much difference to him. The threat of strike action or a pay rise was soon forgotten.

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