Kilmarnock workers vote for strike action over jobs

7 Mar

Unite members at Mahle Engine Systems have voted overwhelmingly for strike action to save world-class manufacturing at their Kilmarnock plant.

In a turnout of over 80% a resounding 85% voted in favour of strike action in response to Mahle’s decision to offshore component manufacturing for the high-spec automotive market to sites in Italy and Slovakia.

The ballot result comes after nearly seven months of intransigence by Mahle’s Senior Director Matthias Langbein in the face of workers’ efforts to keep the 540 jobs and skills in East Ayrshire.

Unite Officer Jim Winter said, “If Matthias Langbein was in any doubt about the anger among this highly skilled workforce over the future of their livelihoods then those doubts should now be dispelled. 

Langbein and his management team produced no answers to our detailed questions and proposals for the plant’s future viability and indicated that none will be forthcoming.  They have shifted the goal posts at every opportunity.

This plant is profitable, its contracts are lucrative and the skills of this workforce are second to none.  We are not prepared to stand-by and let local livelihoods be thrown on the scrapheap – we’ve had enough of that in Ayrshire over the last few years.”

Further discussions with Unite representatives and Mahle Directors are planned for the 15th March.  The timetable for action will be announced following the outcome of these meetings.

ENDS

Notes to Editors: For further information please contact Unite Regional Officer Jim Winter on 07739654856 or Peter Welsh in the Unite Scotland Campaigns Unit on 07810157931.

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