Sunday, 15 April 2012

BMI job losses - a response

When the news of 1,200 potential job losses at BMI, including around 400 at Castle Donington, broke last Thursday I was deeply upset at the potential impact on many families and directly on the economy of North West Leicestershire.

400 local people will lose their livelihoods. Many will have highly desirable transferable skills and will find alternative employment in the aviation industry. Others, such as cleaners and maintenance staff, will find themselves embroiled in an exceptionally tough employment market where many many people are now classed as suffering from long-term worklessness.

The loss of 400 jobs will have a significant knock on effect to the local economy in and around Castle Donington. Shops, pubs and restaurants will all suffer and in some cases may well find themselves untenable.

Let us make no mistake that these job losses are a tragedy for the district.

Of course with annual losses in 2010 of around £150 million BMI (and their new owners) must take action and at this point the onus must be on minimising and mitigating the impact of these job losses.

I appreciate that the district council can have limited influence on outcomes but I do believe that we must do all that we reasonably can to assist. For this reason I have contacted Richard Blunt, Leader of the Council, to assure him of my support in any initiatives that the district take to assist.

Similarly I truly hope that our MP, Andrew Bridgen, can have a positive impact in his meetings with British Airways and potential investors.

I have also contacted the main unions for the employees of BMI, Unite and GMB, to assure them of my support should the district council be able to help moving forward.

Right now hundreds of families around our district and in the immediate neighbouring  areas are fearful for their future. I truly believe that this isn't a time for party politics but a time when we all should stand side by side to achieve the best possible outcome.

Of course as terrible as these potential losses are there are many other hard working people around the area who are worried for their jobs also. We must do all we can to assist them in these troubled economic times.

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