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RMT demands to meet Dover Tory MP over threat to local jobs

FERRIES union RMT has written to Dover’s Tory MP to seek an urgent meeting on the threat to local seafarer jobs.

In a letter to Natalie Elphicke, the union warned that Irish Ferries’ plans to operate passenger services to Calais from June with low-paid crews from eastern Europe will result in job losses. 

RMT general secretary Mick Cash wrote: “The basic hourly rate of pay for an Ordinary Seaman on the Cypriot-registered MV Ulysses was €5.51 (£4.77) in November 2018 and we believe that this ‘low cost’ model is planned for the Dover-Calais route.

“[This would] effectively shut hundreds of seafarers out of jobs and further damage local businesses, just at the point passenger numbers recover.

“The last thing local seafarers need is an aggressive anti-trade union ferry operator like Irish Ferries that will undercut [other operators such as] P&O Ferries and DFDS. 

“The [Tories are] very keen to talk about the ‘levelling up’ agenda. Irish Ferries’ arrival would unquestionably ‘level down’ jobs, pay, conditions and safety standards. This is completely unacceptable.”



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