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Hillside Workers Announce Public Meeting

Media Release: Rail & Maritime Transport Union
Thursday 16 June 2011

Hillside Workers Announce Public Meeting and Call on KiwiRail and the Government to Invest in the Future

A mass meeting of KiwiRail Hillside workers has unanimously called on their employer and the Government to back them and the future of New Zealand railways.

The Rail and Maritime Transport Union said a full turn out of workers today voted to fight KiwiRail’s plan to buy Chinese built rolling stock and the Company’s proposal to slash 41 jobs at Hillside.

RMTU official Dave Kearns said “the mood of the meeting was one of determination, the workers here are committed to the future of rail and of the Hillside Workshops”.

“Our members have endorsed a public campaign to turn around the plan to cut jobs.”

“We’ve seen the figures around the pricing of Hillside’s work and the Chinese bid and we don’t think the case for going overseas stacks up. We’re running the numbers past our experts and we think we can make a case for keeping the work here.”

“But this isn’t just about dollars and cents, it’s about the dozens of businesses that depend on Hillside for work and the people those businesses employ. The downstream impact of these cuts on our families and the wider community doesn’t bear thinking about.”

“We’re holding a public meeting next Wednesday and we’re calling on the community to come along and have their say and back our workers,” said Dave Kearns.

The public meeting is on Wednesday 22 June, 7.00 p.m. at Cargill Enterprises Hall, 199 Hillside Rd, Dunedin, and is hosted by ‘Keep Kiwis Working Campaign’ and the RMTU.

Hillside employs 170 highly skilled engineers in South Dunedin.


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