Connect with us

News

Shadow Chancellor comes to Gatwick as calls come to save local jobs

Published

on

Visiting an empty Gatwick terminal, Labour Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds joined Crawley’s Council Leader and Labour’s Leader in West Sussex in calling for a plan to save Crawley’s jobs

With so much of the local economy connected to aviation, it is predicted that the coronavirus pandemic will lead to higher job losses in Crawley than any other town. Thousands of redundancies have already been announced at major local employers such as Virgin Atlantic, Easyjet, and Swissport, while some companies such as British Airways have used the crisis as an opportunity to impose drastic changes to working conditions.

For months, local politicians, businesses and trade organisations have been calling for Government action to avoid mass unemployment and to rebuild Crawley’s economy – so far without success.

From the start of August the furlough support scheme will only cover 60% of a worker’s salary. With Government flight restrictions severely limiting the ability of the sector to compete, many employers will have to choose between maintaining a payroll they can no longer afford or making big cuts to their local workforce. The Government has to act now to save Crawley’s jobs.

Anneliese Dodds MP said:

“Sectors hardest hit by Covid-19, such as aviation, need their own deal to protect jobs and working conditions. Labour has already set out a six-condition plan for aviation which would save thousands of jobs connected to the sector in Crawley, while forcing companies to clean up their act on tax avoidance and the environment.”

Cllr Peter Lamb, Crawley Council Leader responded:

“I’m very grateful to the Shadow Chancellor for meeting us today and lending her support to our call that the Government acts now to save local jobs and protect working conditions. We are just days away from the furlough scheme winding down, the Government can’t afford to delay any longer.”

Cllr Michael Jones, West Sussex Labour Leader added:

“This isn’t just an issue for the area immediately surrounding Gatwick, many industries and jobs are linked to the airport right across the region, including all of West Sussex. 

“We must also fully support those campaigning to stop companies like British Airways trying to force through the rehiring of their remaining workers on worse terms and conditions.  It’s massively unacceptable for the Government to allow anyone to use the furlough scheme and then act in this way, which is why locally we are backing the aims of the BA Betrayal campaign one hundred percent.”

News

Gas leak repaired as 700 Crawley residents evacuated after major incident declared

Published

on

A gas leak that caused the immediate evacuation of 700 Crawley residents in flats in Milton Mount Avenue, Crawley has finally been repaired sources have revealed to CN24.

The emergency services responded to a major incident at a large block of flats in Milton Mount Avenue, Crawley at around 12.21am this morning (Wed 6th Jan).

The nature of the leak was so severe that it was declared a ‘major incident’.

A multi-agency response was implemented and Sussex Police worked collaboratively with partners including West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, South East Coast Ambulance Service, West Sussex County Council, Crawley Borough Council and Southern Gas to resolve the incident as quickly and safely as possible.

Approximately 700 residents were evacuated and placed in temporary accommodation including hotels.

A source within the emergency services said:

“I have never seen the evacuation of that number of people done so quickly!”

While sources say the gas leak has now been repaired, they added that it will be some time before residents can return due to the need to allow the gas to dissipate.

This has meant that hundreds of residents are now split up across the town in various hotels and shelters awaiting a return to their homes which could take many hours to resolve.

Detective Chief Superintendent Steve Rayland said:

“This is an ongoing incident which has caused huge disruption to hundreds of people on a cold January morning, and I’d like to thank everyone for their patience and understanding as we continue to work with our partners to minimise the ongoing disruption.

“We are working hard to ensure this is dealt with as soon as possible to enable everyone to return home, however this may take several hours yet. In the meantime, we are urging everyone to stay away from the area to allow the responding agencies to focus on resolving the incident to allow residents to return home.

“The exact cause of the gas leak is yet to be determined but not believed to be criminal, and we will provide more information as soon as we are able to.”

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of Crawley Borough Council, said:

“The council declared a local authority major incident, supported by all partners, in the early hours of this morning.

“Staff worked together to manage the safe evacuation of residents and to transport them into the temporary accommodation, which was arranged around the town.

“This is an unsettling time for Milton Mount residents and their families. They will be able to return to their homes as soon as it safe for them to do so.”

Milton Mount residents should call 01293 438758 with any questions. Any non-residents with any concerns should call our Contact Centre on 01293 438000

Continue Reading

Trending