P&O Ferries, the UK’s leading ferry operator, has laid off 800 people without warning. Unions called the case a “flagrant betrayal,” saying P&O wanted to replace the crew with cheaper foreign labor.
P&O has not commented on the incident, but Labor Representative Carl Turner posted a message to company employees on his Twitter page. It says P&O Ferries will make a significant announcement on Thursday, which, along with support from Dubai-based DP World, will ensure the company’s long-term viability. As a result of the report, passengers were disembarked from all ships, and cargo was unloaded. “This means that serious disruptions are expected in all of our ports today,” the letter said.
The company apologized to its customers on Twitter, writing, “Unfortunately, P&O Ferries services will not be available for the next few hours. Port staff will provide information, and the cruise will be on another operator’s ship.”
According to the unions, there may be a stalemate as the company has instructed its crew not to leave the ships, but security and replacement personnel have already arrived at some ports.
P&O is the largest operator of ferries on the Dover-Calais route, the most famous and busiest sea route between Britain and Europe, but also from Hull to Rotterdam and Liverpool to Dublin and Cairnryan in Scotland to Larne. (guardian)
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