Is thisÂ the shot against coolies that will be heard all over the world?
IT workers in the UK cities of Manchester and Skelmersdale (in West Lancashire) have voted to strike over job losses and offshoring of their jobs to India.
The workers are said to be members of the Unite trade union and work for French company Steria, which has its Indian offices in Noida, Chennai and Pune.
Some 31 employees face loss of their jobs in the UK because of Steria’s offshoring policies.
Needless to say, the workers are petrified that more jobs will be lost to India once those currently in jeopardy have gone.
The Unite trade union said 93 workers participated in the union ballot, with 71% voting for strike action and 89% voting for action short of a strike.
Unite plans to meet Steria next week in a final attempt to save the jobs of those who wish to remain with the company and to seek assurances for future job security.
If the talks fail, a strike will follow soon.
Unite’s Negotiating Officer for the IT Sector Richard Lynch said:
The vote for industrial action is a clear reflection of our members’ anger that their jobs are being offshored to India at a time of increasing economic uncertainty in the UK.
We believe that this export of jobs is unacceptable in the current climate and we urge Steria to halt the compulsory redundancies and to reconsider its plans to offshore 70% of the work on this account.
God, we hope this trend spreads to America.
With Barack Obama’s victory, the unions in America now have a spring in their steps and a rough edge to their voices.
Whatever the idiots at Nasscom may say (‘our IT sector is safe‘), we have a feeling that the vice is tightening around Som Mittal’s cojones.
Separately, UK mobile phone carrier Orange is said to be planning to move back its Indian call centers to the UK to improve service.