Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Business News

BAE defence firm workers agree pay cut


Workers at two BAE Systems factories have voted to take a pay cut to save around 150 jobs, agreeing to one day of unpaid leave a month for the next two years.

The move by staff at the manufacturing firm's sites in Samlesbury and Warton in Lancashire follow other measures to save hundreds of jobs announced in September as part of cutbacks.

Ian Waddell, national officer of the Unite union, said: "In a true collective spirit, the workforce have made a significant sacrifice to save their fellow colleagues from redundancy and a very uncertain future.

"The workforce deserve recognition for this act of solidarity and local management deserve recognition for being prepared to explore all options to avoid redundancies.

"The action to save jobs is in sharp contrast to the refusal of the management at BAE Systems' Brough site to properly consult the unions and explore ways of saving jobs. Instead, they seem determined to sacrifice 899 skilled workers.

"The workers at BAE Systems are highly skilled. The UK economy can not afford lose them. We hope BAE Systems and the Government does everything possible to secure new contracts over the next two years and learns from the example shown by the workers at Samlesbury."

BAE Systems said 2,000 workers at the two factories are covered by the agreement which it believes will help save around 150 jobs when combined with secondment opportunities being pursued.

A spokesman said: "The company is committed, as far as possible, to pursuing all mitigation opportunities to try and significantly reduce the need for compulsory redundancies. The agreement in Warton and Samlesbury is part of a number of mitigations the company has explored and implemented as part of our close working relationship with the trade unions."