Locked out printers in solidarity overture with ver:di union

by - 6th March 2012, 15.59 BST

A delegation from the locked-out workforce at MMP Bootle (pictured) is meeting representatives of one of the largest trade unions in the world to seek their support in a 3-week campaign against unfair redundancies at the Merseyside printing plant.

German-based ver:di is a multi-sector union with more than 2 million members.

Unite has been seeking support from sister unions across Europe as well as communicating with MMP’s European works council to put pressure on the company’s supply chain and customers as well directly on management of the Austrian-based multinational.

It comes after the Bootle workers rejected an offer on Monday that would have seen many of their colleagues left open to dismissal at the Liverpool packaging site.

UnionNews understands contacts with the company are continuing, but the workers – who have been locked out since 18th February – say they expect management to honour a previous commitment to pay a fair redundancy settlement to anyone who is forced out of their job.

The company blames the loss of a key contract with cereals manufacturer Kellogs for the current proposed job cuts, but Unite is disputing the selection criteria for 37 redundancies.

Unite members at a sister plant on Deeside in north Wales are also considering balloting for action over the selection issue.

The locked out workers say they intend to stay united and will not be bullied by the employers.

You can watch our picket line report on the strike here: