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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

GMB Scotland Condemn SNP’s Call To Move Trident Out Of Scotland

The latest political posturing has nothing do with looking after the interests of Scottish workers and everything to do with the deputy leadership campaign of the SNP says GMB Scotland

GMB Scotland, the union for defence and shipbuilding workers, has commented on a call from the SNP for Trident to be removed from Scotland. (See notes to editors for previous GMB Scotland press releases on Trident).

The news follows a House of Commons vote yesterday (Monday, 18th July 2016) to approve the manufacture of four Successor-class submarines to replace the current Trident nuclear programme.

Gary Cook, GMB Scotland Organiser and Scottish Chair of the Confederation of Shipbuilding and Engineering Unions (CSEU), said “Just when we thought that thousands of good, high value jobs were safe, the SNP and the Scottish political establishment show their utter contempt for Scottish workers and their families by putting their jobs on the line once again.

The latest call by the SNP for Trident work to be removed from Scotland is completely reckless, and shows a blatant disregard, not only for the jobs in Rosyth and Faslane but also the Upper Clyde shipbuilders who will transfer to other locations to work on the Successor programme. The supply chain and the many communities Trident jobs support across the length and breadth of Scotland would also be destroyed.

It feels like this latest call has nothing to do with what’s best for Scotland's hard working people and everything to do with the deputy leadership campaign of the SNP.

The decision to commit to build and maintain the Trident Successor program has been taken following a fair democratic vote, and it’s time for the whole Scottish political establishment to accept this fact, take it on the chin and live with it, or else risk further alienating thousands of workers in Scotland whose futures depend on defence manufacturing.

With the recent delays in the government’s Type-26 frigate programme, the collapse in Scottish manufacturing and the economy teetering on the brink of recession, long term jobs supported by the Successor programme should be treated as gold dust by Scottish MPs. Instead it seems like the Scottish political establishment won’t be happy until the Scottish manufacturing base has been totally wiped out.

It’s time for the Scottish political establishment to wake up to the huge inequality that blights Scotland, the low paid insecure work that has become the norm for too many of our citizens and the fact you cannot support decent public services with jobs flipping burgers and taking tourists around Loch Lomond."


Contact: Gary Cook on 07712 677594 or GMB press office on 07970 863411

Notes to editors

1 GMB press release dated Thursday, July 14, 2016

GMB Scotland Urges SNP To Consider Economic And Employment Realities Ahead Of Trident Debate

Scotland is in no position to play fast and loose with thousands of high-value jobs dependent on trident renewal says GMB Scotland.

Ahead of the House of Commons debate on trident renewal next week, GMB Scotland has today (Thursday 14 July) urged SNP MPs to wake-up to the economic and employment realities of playing ‘fast and loose’ with Scottish jobs dependent on the future of the UK’s nuclear deterrent.

In a letter to MPs representing constituencies on the Clyde and Fife, GMB Scotland has warned that the recent delays to the Type-26 frigate programme on the Upper Clyde by the UK government demonstrate that there are no guarantees on the future security of thousands of skilled jobs.

Against the backdrop of a stagnant Scottish economy and a manufacturing sector in chronic decline GMB Scotland is calling for MPs to stand-up for Scotland’s interests by recognising the prosperity defence sector employment delivers for our working-class communities.

The debate will take place in the House of Commons on Monday 18 July.

Gary Cook, GMB Scotland Organiser, said “As we have seen on the Upper Clyde, given half a chance the Tories will take the work promised to Scotland back to their political base and there is no shortage of areas in the south that are crying out for work of this value.

So without any support for the vital jobs, skills and the high value terms and conditions our members hold, Scotland is in real danger of wishing away the economic and employment benefits of renewal.

Our economy is flirting dangerously with recession, we are struggling to achieve any sort of meaningful growth and we are haemorrhaging industrial jobs hand over fist through the decline of the offshore sector and neglect of our manufacturing base.

Scotland is in no position to play fast and loose with thousands of high-value jobs dependent on trident renewal or with the prosperity of the working-class communities delivering this valuable work on the Clyde and in Fife.”