Prospect calls for action on BAE cuts

Prospect calls for action on BAE cuts

Prospect has called on the government to intervene to prevent the loss of 500 jobs at BAE sites across the country, including Guildford, Leeds and Telford, which will close altogether. The union represents 500 specialists at BAE Global Combat Systems.

The job losses follow 200 voluntary redundancies announced by BAE at the beginning of the year.

The union says the loss of highly skilled engineers at BAE is a serious blow to the defence industrial base. Prospect deputy general secretary Mike Clancy said: “This is not the time for the UK to lose highly skilled workers from a prime defence contractor. We need to invest in such skills for the future.”

Clancy said the government’s decision to postpone the Future Rapid Effects System – a fleet of new armoured vehicles for the army – was a major factor in BAE’s decision.“

“The cuts announced by BAE demonstrate very clearly that it is now imperative that government and the Ministry of Defence revisit the defence industrial strategy and update it. The defence industry needs certainty and a stable environment to operate in – not dithering or the postponement of important parts of the UK defence equipment programme.

“The fact that BAE has acquired defence manufacturer, Swedish Hagglunds raises the possibility that vital defence contracts which could be carried out in the UK will be manufactured overseas,” said Clancy.