Ford workers have voted 63 per cent to 36 per cent against strike action in the campaign to save car production at the Dagenham plant. In all, almost seven thousand workers were balloted over strike action following the company’s announcement that it planned to close the car assembly section of the plant with the loss of 2,400 jobs.
Tony Woodley, national secretary of the Transport and General Workers’ Union, said he was “disappointed but not surprised” at the result. “Ford have bribed and blackmailed our members into submission. The company hasencouraged the remaining workforce to believe that, if a strike was forthcoming, further investment would be jeopardised.
“Ford’s actions to close its last major plant in Britain, breaking agreements reached with the British workforce whilst honouring identical agreements in Germany, must lead us to believe that we are the soft touches of Europe: quick, cheap and easy to sack.”
A Ford spokesman said: “Ford fully accepts its responsibility to minimise the impact on both its employees and the local community arising from the cessation of vehicle production.
“The voluntary separation packages being offered to employees, plus the extensive employee support programme proposed by Ford for employees and the local community are industry-leading.”