Steelworkers affected by the closure of the SSI steel plant in Redcar have travelled to Brussels to urge the business secretary, Sajid Javid and the European Council to take urgent action to stop the dumping of cheap Chinese steel.
Ministers from EU member states are to discuss the challenges faced by the EU steel industry, which has been suffering from falling metal prices, resulting in mass job losses across the country,including 2,000 at the SSI plant in Teesside.
The meeting comes amid growing pressure on the UK government over its failure to step in to assist the country's crisis hit steel industry, which is being hammered by a flood of subsidised Chinese steel and energy tariffs double that of their European competitors.
Redcar MP Anna Turley has responded to the latest support package for former SSI steelworkers:
I am pleased this funding has finally arrived from central government after weeks of waiting which has caused frustration and anxiety for many families.
Since the promise of £80 million was made several weeks ago, it has shrunk to £50 million and numerous obstacles to accessing it have been put in our way by Whitehall. I am relieved we can now get on with making sure this support gets to the workers, their families, and the local businesses who need it.
I know the local taskforce have put in a lot of work preparing these support schemes and my focus now will be ensuring it is delivered. With Christmas fast approaching, it is vital steelworkers and their families are not left struggling."
Four new funding packages will be available to help redundant employees deal with the impact of losing their jobs and help find new ones.Read the full story ›
The Government has issued new guidelines to encourage companies working in the public sector to buy British steel.Read the full story ›
Redcar MP Anna Turley has demanded that the Government release the money it has promised for the training of former steelworkers.Read the full story ›
Steelworkers have gathered in Westminster to call for the Government to introduce immediate measures to prevent further job losses.Read the full story ›
Workers from steel communities in Teesside will lobby MPs today as part of growing demands for Government action.Read the full story ›
The steelworkers’ union Community is taking its campaign to save the UK steel industry to Parliament this week. On Tuesday, Community’s General Secretary, Roy Rickhuss, will give evidence to the House of Commons Business Innovation and Skills Select Committee inquiry into the steel crisis.
On Wednesday, dozens of Community members from steelworks across the UK will travel to Parliament to lobby MPs ahead of an Opposition Day debate on the steel industry.
- Read more on the steel crisis
The UK steel industry has seen around 3,000 job losses in recent weeks, following the closure of SSI in Redcar and proposed redundancies at Tata Steel sites in Scunthorpe and Scotland. The crisis has been caused by the dumping of cheap Chinese steel into the world market, and high energy costs.
A torchlit procession is being held on Teesside on Saturday evening, October 24, as a show of solidarity for the more than 2,000 who lost their jobs after the collapse of SSI UK.
The coke ovens and blast furnace at Redcar were shut down earlier this month, just days after the company entered liquidation due to financial difficulties.
Many more jobs are expected to be affected in the wider supply chain.
A procession to the top of Eston Nab is being held this evening to pay tribute to those who have worked in the steelmaking industry on Teesside over the past 170 years.
Teesside MPs are meeting the official receiver for Redcar's steel works to discuss how the SSI site will be cleared.
They want more detail about plans to wind it down and questions answered about what will happen to the site which used to employ over 2 thousand people
It's believed potential buyers are still contacting local politicians, but there's thought to be very little hope of a deal.