New Internationalist

Blades of glory

The UK’s only factory making wind turbines is due to close at the end of this month, with the loss of 600 jobs. This makes a mockery of the Government’s rhetoric about becoming a ‘world leader in green jobs’. So the workers have taken matters into their own hands, and occupied the factory, owned by Vestas.

This is unprecedented for the Isle of Wight, which is not exactly known as a hotbed of workers’ radicalism nor of climate activism. The occupiers say: ‘The government has just announced a major expansion of renewable energy including wind power. We are calling on Vestas to keep the factories open, saving jobs and offering those who want to leave a better redundancy deal. We are calling on the government to intervene to save jobs at Vestas - through nationalisation if that is what it takes - to show that it is serious about saving the planet.’

They need our support. You can follow what’s happening, and make a donation on the Save Vestas website.

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  1. #1 ciderpunx 23 Jul 09

    Updates

    * Police are pursuing a tactic of [a href=’http://atthesauce.blogspot.com/2009/07/vestas-blockade.html’]starving the occupiers out
    * Cops in riot gear have been seen occupying the first floor of the factory and trying to smash the workers barricades.
    * There have been two arrests, both of people trying to take food to the workers.
    * Management have threatened to withdraw redundancy pay from the workers if the occupation continues.
    * They have also said that the workers will be allowed food if the leave.
    * Security have completed a fence round the factory.
    * A support camp has been established nearby.
    * A solidarity demo happened outside Ed Miliband’s office in Whitehall at which protestors spelled out ’Save Vestas’ with their bodies.

    More on the [a href=’http://savevestas.wordpress.com/’]Save Vestas site.


    Save Vestas, Save The Planet
    Support the Factory Occupation

    Speakers: Vestas Worker, Chris Baugh (PCS Ass. Gen. Sec, pc), Seamus Milne,
    Jonathan Neale

    Friday 24th July, 6pm, ULU Malet Street, London WC1E 7HY

    Called by the Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union Group

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