1. ITV Report

Remploy workers hoping for extension as consultation phase ends

Remploy workers have held several protests since the announcement that seven factories could close in Wales Photo: ITV News Wales

The 90-day consultation phase over the future of Remploy will come to an end today - but the workers' union Unite is hoping for an extension to talks.

Remploy staff from across Wales have spoken out against the plans to close seven of the nine factories, which employ people with disabilities and learning difficulties.

Almost 300 jobs at sites in Swansea, Aberdare, Merthyr, Bridgend, Croespenmaen, Abertillery and Wrexham are at risk.

Across the UK there are plans to close 36 of 54 factories, which Unions say will put 1,700 people out of a job.

In Wrexham there have been new calls to rescue the Remploy factory, which currently employs about 40 people with learning difficulties.

Wrexham Labour MP Ian Lucas has asked that the consultation phase be extended whilst talks over the possibility of a private company taking over it continue.

And Plaid Cymru's regional AM for North Wales Llyr Gruffydd has also raised the plight of workers in talks at the Assembly.

Given that the consultation period is coming to an end, Remploy workers and their families deserve answers. Time is running out for the 270 workers in Remploy's Welsh factories.

– Plaid Cymru AM Llyr Gruffydd

Protests over the proposed closures have been staged across Wales, including one in Cardiff which took place at the beginning of the month.

UK Government ministers insist they have not taken the decision lightly and believe the money can be better spent elsewhere to get disabled people into work in other areas.

The Unite union has told ITV Wales that they will be ballotting for strike action from 26th July until 4th June.

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