Yesterday, I called for the government to support the Steel Industry. I attended a packed meeting for the ‘save our steel’ campaign and spoke to steel workers from around the country on the devastating effects the government’s failure to act has had on the steel industry. Families and communities in the UK are being hit hard by the government’s neglect. I also met with steel representatives from Unite union Flint office.
Labour had called an Opposition Day Debate in the Commons calling for the government to publish a full Industrial Strategy in order to protect this vital asset, including its valuation of the industry’s importance to the UK.
Recent closures in Dalzell, Clydebridge and Scunthorpe by Tata Steel have resulted in 1,170 direct job losses, as well as 2,000 as a result of the closure in Redcar by SSI. With the Steel industry in crisis, there have also been around 7,000 job losses in local supply chains while a further 1,700 jobs are at risk as Caparo Industries has gone into administration. It has been recognised that for every direct steel job lost, a further three indirect job losses will follow.
Local Steel production in north-east Wales is an integral part of the Flintshire local community and is one of the many reasons why I today called for the government to act.
This crisis has resulted in thousands of people losing their jobs, not through any fault of their own. The blame rests squarely with the government’s failure to intervene and help an industry in its time of need.
I will push the government into supporting our vital steel industry. Integral companies, such as Airbus, rely on steel and it is short-sighted for the government not to ensure British steel survives. I and local MPs will continue to fight for those steel workers around the country.