…in brief

This week’s news in brief

New jobs at BMW

More than 1,000 new jobs will be created as BMW invests another £50m
building Minis at its Oxford factory. The investment will lead to an extra 700
permanent jobs at Oxford, which already employs 4,500 people building the Mini,
300 at the pressings plant in Swindon and 150 at the group’s factory in

Amicus strike threat

Trade union Amicus has threatened to picket the CBI’s national conference in
Manchester in November unless it drops its opposition to equal pay audits.
Roger Lyons, general secretary of Amicus, has accused employers of holding back
measures to close the 19 per cent pay gap between men and women after only 70
out of thousands of companies agreed to carry out pay audits.  www.msf.org.uk

Boost to Peugeot

Peugeot is to create about 700 new jobs as it increases production to boost
the number of 206 cars produced in the UK from 200,000 this year to 230,000 in
2003. The new workers will be taken on between now and the end of the year to
form a fourth shift at Peugeot’s Coventry factory, which employs about 3,000

Blowing the whistle

The Financial Services Authority has introduced a new whistleblowers hotline
and e-mail service for staff concerned about irregularities in the workplace.  Employees in the financial sector, who
suspect any wrongdoing and feel issues cannot be resolved internally, can now
go directly to the industry’s regulator.  www.fsa.gov.uk/whistle/

Scheme welcomed

The TUC has welcomed the Government’s Step-Up scheme which aims to tackle
long-term un-employment by offering a full-time job at the national minimum
wage for up to 50 weeks. TUC general secretary John Monks said: "For many
long-term unemployed this will be the first chance to work in a real job, not a
make-work scheme. StepUP is an important phase in the drive towards full
employment in every region."   www.nds.coi.gov.uk

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