South Yorkshire steelworkers are calling upon Prime Minister David Cameron to ‘Stand up for Steel’.
The Community trade union, which represents steelworkers at firms such as Tata Speciality Steels and Sheffield Forgemasters, are campaigning for action to be taken to make the South Yorkshire and UK steel industry prosper.
Community’s Stuart Sansome, who is also chair of the multi-union at Tata Steel Aldwarke, said: “The government needs to take action now if it wants this vital foundation industry to continue and thrive in South Yorkshire and across the UK.
“Our steelworks are the beating heart of industry in this area. For every job on our site there are three more jobs supported in the wider economy.”
The campaign is calling for the government to make energy cheaper for energy-intensive industries such as the steel industry. At present, energy for steel companies in France and Germany can be up to 60 per cent cheaper than for firms in this country.
‘Stand up for Steel’ also wants government procurement to be used to deliver for UK foundation industries, employers to be encouraged to work with trade unions, and the government to stand up for the UK steel industry in Europe and across the world.
Steelworkers, their friends and family, and people across South Yorkshire are being urged to send a post card to Mr Cameron calling on him to listen to the campaign.
In addition, Community will be distributing hard hat stickers as a way for people to show their support.
Roy Rickhuss, general secretary of Community, said: “This so-called recovery is not being felt by our members in South Yorkshire.
“These past years have been really difficult and it doesn’t feel like we’re out of the woods yet.
“We just want to compete. Steel is a foundation industry. It supplies into strategic sectors such as infrastructure, automotive, aerospace and construction.
“Without a strong steel industry we wouldn’t have a strong manufacturing and construction industry.”
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