Thirteen people at Prisme Packaging in Dundee lost their jobs on Wednesday the latest victims of an increasingly brutal recession. Their firm, which manufactures cardboard boxes, lost its biggest customer on Monday and has subsequently gone bust.
But this non union workforce found to their cost that they are more vulnerable with the treatment they received as the firms owners announced they were all sacked with immediate effect and would not receive any redundancy pay or even their wages for March.
They were each handed a letter telling them they would not get a penny piece even though some of them had worked there for 14 years and were legally entitled to severance pay as the firm had gone bust. Their response was immediate and unanimous, they occupied the factory and took control of the assets.
Since I happened to be up in Dundee on Thursday, campaigning for SSP candidate Angela Gorrie in next weeks Maryfield by election, I went along to offer my support to the occupation.
I was delighted to meet Matthew, Christine, David and the others and find them in such good spirits considering what had happened to them. I recounted my experience in the Caterpillar occupation of 1988 and pledged support from the SSP in helping them save their jobs or at least secure the redundancy monies they are entitled to.