Festive factory blow
Cummins slammed for plant closure a week before Christmas
Cummins: ‘devastating news’
US engineering company Cummins has been criticised for putting more than 100 jobs at risk by closing its Cumbernauld plant a week before Christmas.
Business Minister Jamie Hepburn, the local SNP MSP, and Stuart McDonald, the new SNP MP for the area, were joined by trade unionists in condemning the decision.
In October, the Fortune 500 Corporation announced a ‘consultation’ on the future of the plant which refits diesel engines for industrial and transport use.
Since the announcement, there have been regular briefings involving Cummins, Unite the Union, Scottish Enterprise, and the Scottish Government.
In a joint statement, the two SNP parliamentarians said: “This is devastating news and a terrible way to treat loyal and dedicated staff.
” We do not accept that Cummins have properly explored the suggested alternatives that have been put to them, and no sensible reason for rejecting them has been provided to us.”
The Unite union said the company was “intent on closing the factory” despite admitting that it did not need to before autumn 2020 prior to these plans being brought forward.
Unite regional industrial officer, Pat McIlvogue, said: “Cummins UK management are shamefully intent on wrecking Christmas for 130 workers and their families.
“They have rejected every viable option brought forward to make the factory sustainable rendering their own arguments redundant.
“Credit must also be given to the Scottish Government for working with Unite throughout this period to keep the factory open. Unfortunately, it’s another example of corporate callousness and management must hang their heads in shame.”
Jobs have also been axed at a manufacturing firm in Dundee. The agency staff at Dover Fueling Solutions were told they would lose their jobs. Unions claimed about 130 roles have been affected but one worker said the total was closer to 180.
The firm, which produces fuel dispensers, declined to comment but said it had recorded year-on-year growth in a “cyclical business”.
The news came as the number of Scots seeking work fell by 9,000 to 100,000 between August and October, according to official figures.
The jobless rate now stands at 3.7%, just below the UK figure of 3.8%.
Data from the Office for National Statistics also showed that the number of Scots in employment fell by 21,000, to 2,648,000.
At the same time, there was a rise of 30,000 in the number of people counted as unavailable for work, including the ill, students and unpaid carers.
Meanwhile, UK-wide wage growth, excluding bonuses, slowed to 3.5% from 3.6% from July to September.