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From: The Socialist issue 1114, 16 December 2020: Unemployment and Covid rising - The crisis is not over - Fight for jobs and safety

Search site for keywords: Fire - Gas - Pay - Capitalism

Stop 'fire and rehire' at British Gas

British Gas van, Photo: KRoock74/CC

British Gas van, Photo: KRoock74/CC   (Click to enlarge)

As a loyal employee of over 20 years I am disgusted with the way senior management at British Gas are treating their staff.

The threat of the S188 'fire and rehire' is bad enough, but now the company is trying to break the collective bargaining of two unions, singling out the 'no' voters in order to pressure workers into signing up for greatly reduced terms, conditions and pay.

Years of extremely poor management and horrendously bad financial decisions have led to customer losses. They use the energy pay cap and the Covid crisis as cover for their own failures.

The new chief executive officer Chris O'Shea is not willing to learn from his predecessors' mistakes and is now making a whole new set of poor decisions, hurting the brand and trust of both customers and workforce alike.

How he sleeps at night is beyond me, but I'm sure his bank balance and possible shareholder rewards are the motivation. Sad times, and if this is allowed to continue, watch this space, as large companies follow suit. This is disaster capitalism at its worst.

British Gas Engineer

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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Article dated 16 December 2020

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