Representatives of Unite, the UK’s biggest offshore trade union, will tell the Scottish parliament’s Economy, Energy and Tourism committee that imposed cuts to jobs, terms and conditions across the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) must end if the industry is to have a safe and sustainable future.
A joint offshore trade union delegation will submit evidence to the ‘Future Prospects for Oil and Gas’ session tomorrow morning (Wednesday 25 November) where the full impact of the crisis on workers’ livelihoods and rights will be relayed to the committee’s MSPs.
Since the turn of the year at least 65,000 jobs across the oil and gas sector and related industries have been lost as a result of the slump in global oil price, while working time has been increased to ‘three on, three off’ along with pay cuts of up to 10 per cent.
Unite regional officer Tommy Campbell said: “For the ordinary worker the story of the crisis has been an industry-driven juggernaut of impositions that’s decimated jobs, skills and hard fought terms and conditions. It’s been an extraordinary year.
“In recent weeks we have seen a welcome and necessary thaw from some employers but much of the damage has already been done and we are deeply concerned about the extent of the occupational safety and skills gaps this crisis has created.
“The shockwaves of the downturn have also led to significant jobs cuts in our manufacturing, hospitality, retail and service sectors, particularly in the Grampian region where oil and gas is the focal point of the local economy.
“We have to come together now - government, industry and unions - to ensure that employment rights are respected and decent employment relations are the rule rather than the exception so we can build a recovery that is safe and sustained.”
For further information please contact Unite regional officer Tommy Campbell (in attendance at the Scottish Parliament) on 07810 157920 or Peter Welsh on 07810 157931.
- Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.