Portsmouth rally to fight for shipbuilding jobs

PROTEST Portsmouth Trades Council president Jon Woods at a separate rally in 2011

PROTEST Portsmouth Trades Council president Jon Woods at a separate rally in 2011

Harriet Lee, 16

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TRADE unionists are holding a rally tomorrow over the loss of shipbuilding jobs in Portsmouth.

Portsmouth Trades Council met yesterday with BAE Systems workers and trade union representatives over the loss of 940 jobs in the dockyard.

It will now hold a rally tomorrow at 1pm at the fountain in Commercial Road, Portsmouth.

It comes as city leaders argue for more time and money to plan Portsmouth’s future.

Jon Woods, president of the trades council, said the decision will be ‘devastating’ to the city, and is calling for widespread support to save the jobs.

He said: ‘You can almost double if not triple (the job losses) in terms of other job losses and knock-on effects to the local economy.

‘It will have such a devastating effect on the city.

‘We believe the politicians and the company can be forced to think again because there will be huge support from people in the city to save the jobs.

‘All of us who live in the city will be affected.

‘It’s not just Portsmouth, we made it very we’re not in favour of getting into this business of saying they should cut the jobs in Govan or Clyde to save jobs in Portsmouth.

‘We want to save jobs in Scotland as well.

‘We want to save shipbuilding whether its in Scotland or in England.’

He added a range of arguments were discussed at the trades council meeting yesterday, including nationalisation of the shipyards.

Next Saturday the trades council, which is made up of delegates from unions in the city, plans to hold a protest march.

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