A steel worker brought hundreds of activists to their feet today as he gave a gut-wrenching speech hours after losing his job.
Brian Dennis is one of 1,700 stricken workers at Britain’s second largest steelmaker – the SSI plant in Redcar, Teesside, whose Thai owners said today they plan to mothball the site.
“This morning I was told I’m losing my job,” he told the Labour Party conference. “All of us steel workers on Teesside are facing the end of our industry and a very bleak future. Only the government can save us now.”
Speaking afterwards, he said: “I’d love for David Cameron to come to Teesside and speak to me.
“I would ask why the Germans will help their steel industry, why the French will help their steel industry, why the Italians bought Ilva Steel for £2bn to help their steel industry, yet he hides behind state rules, state aid rules.
“I’m a lowly steel worker – or ex steel worker now – and I don’t understand. We’re all part of Europe, last time I looked on a map. But that man is hiding behind rules that I don’t understand.
So he needs to come to Teesside. He needs to come to speak to me and my colleagues and our councillors and everybody down on that workforce. He needs to come and give us the answers.
“All these woolly words of ‘I’m doing everything I can’ and ‘I will help’ – well we’re not going to see anything. We need people on the streets. We need people down there speaking to us now.”
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