Thursday, 20 June 2024

From The Liberty Wall – National Liberal Trade Unionists – Government Action Required To Save Carillion Jobs

The collapse of Carillion could see 43,000 out of work.

THE NLTU – National Liberal Trade Unionists – believes that the government must act immediately to stop thousands of workers being thrown onto the scrapheap in the wake of the collapse of Carillion.

Carillion, the construction and outsourcing firm, is based in Wolverhampton, in the West Midlands.  It employs 43,000 staff and is responsible for crucial services in schools, hospitals and prisons.  It collapsed under a debt of £900m and a £580m pensions deficit.

According to the Guardian ‘The company derives £1.7bn – about a third of its revenue – from public sector contracts and public private partnerships – These include providing school dinners, cleaning and catering at NHS hospitals, construction work on rail projects such as HS2 and maintaining 50,000 army base homes for the Ministry of Defence.’

Along with many trade unionists, the NLTU, believes that both Carillion and the government are to blame for the current situation – with the latter appearing to ignore three profit warnings and awarding contract after contract to the former.  We also join others in their call for a public investigation into the actions of Carillion – which is already being dubbed ‘reckless corporate irresponsibility’ – and the government alike.  A further public investigation into the whole issue of private finance contracts should also be held.

However, the NLTU believes that the most important thing that needs to happen (in the short-term) is for the government to immediately step in to stabilise the situation.

Carillion should be nationalised.  This would protect thousands of jobs and keep badly needed infracture projects going.  We cannot see the point in throwing some highly skilled workers onto the scrap heap.  Indeed, the NLTU feels that this policy is absolutely criminal.

Once jobs have been secured we can look at the various options available.  As Distributists, the NLTUs preference would be to create a series of workers co-operatives  – where owners work and workers own.  This would literally put the workforce in charge of their own destiny.

As we mentioned earlier, we can then look into who awarded contracts to Carillion – and why.  We must also question the whole role of PFI as we feel that a national bank should simply create the money required for infrastructure projects, such as building new health centres, hospitals and schools.  But before all that, immediate government action is required to save all 43,000 Carillion jobs.

• CHECK out the National Liberal Trade Unionists – NLTU – here:

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