Union officials were expecting to sign off a new workforce agreement they claim would have ensured Michelin Dundee’s long term viability when the rug was pulled on the factory.
Unite Michelin convener Marc Jackson stressed the union had no prior knowledge of the company’s intention to close the factory and had instead been working on a new flexibility agreement to mitigate the impact of deteriorating market conditions.
“It is important to stress to the workforce and the wider community in Dundee that Unite has a viable plan on the table,” Mr Jackson said.
“It is a plan that can work for the workforce and the company.
“The flexibility agreement, which we believed would be signed-off this week, takes into consideration the current challenging market conditions but we have a plan in place to manage this situation over the coming years.”
The new working arrangements would have been implemented in two-phases and monitored on an annual basis.
For 2018/19, the plan involved a number of voluntary redundancies and a switch to a four-shift pattern from the current monthly five-shift rotation.
If market conditions had not improved by year two, the plan included an option of further voluntary redundancies and a move to a three set shift pattern.
The flexibility agreement plan ensured no reduction in terms and conditions over this period for the remaining workforce.
Mr Jackson said Unite would fight to save the plant.
“The creation of an Action Group involving Unite and other key stakeholders is an important and positive step forward.
“The workforce can be assured that Unite will work tirelessly to ensure that this flexibility agreement is reconsidered by the Michelin Group and that the factory can stay open.”