BAE cuts threaten UK skills base

BAE cuts threaten UK skills base

Prospect has warned that the latest round of 3,000 redundancies at BAE Systems will devastate local communities that depend on defence work and is another body blow to defence manufacturing that will only add to the UK’s economic woes.

Negotiator Tony Hammond said the cuts were a grim reminder that defence cut backs were still filtering through to industry.

“When the country is crying out for highly skilled specialists to help kick some life into the economy, BAE is being forced to make job cuts because of the coalition’s defence policies. The government is sleep walking through a defence skills crisis of its own making.”

Hammond added that Prospect and other unions had met the company today to explore how they, BAE and its supply chain companies can mitigate job losses throughout the UK.

In December 2010, BAE announced 1,400 redundancies because of government decisions to scrap the RAF Nimrod fleet and the early retirement of Harriers jets made in the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR).

The latest cuts announced by BAE Systems affect Typhoon and Hawk production at Brough, East Yorkshire, Samlesbury and Warton, in Lancashire.