Seventy workers will be let go at Seagate

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Seagate has confirmed 70 workers will be affected by lay offs at its plant in Londonderry.

The hard drive manufacturer says it will seek voluntary redundancies but has also confirmed compulsory lay offs are in the pipeline.

In a statement, issued following meetings with staff on Monday, May 30, the company, said: “As indicated in recent public statements related to our latest earnings announcement, Seagate is undertaking a number of actions to better position the company for success and growth and to respond to new demand levels within the industry.”

It blamed technological shifts and a weak economic environment for the jobs blow.

“These new levels are a result of a very dynamic and disrupted storage industry, driven by accelerating usage shifts of technologies and architectures by end users, and underpinned by a weak macro-economic environment.

“Unfortunately the required actions include some reduction in the company’s workforce.

“It is not easy to make decisions that affect people’s lives in ​this way, but we believe this is the best way forward for the company right now. At the Springtown facility, approximately 70 employees (about five per cent of our headcount) will be affected by this action. It is our intention to use both a voluntary and involuntary process to achieve the headcount reduction,” the statement confirmed.

SDLP leader, Colum Eastwood said: “This will be a devastating blow for workers and their families. It will also be a devastating blow for the economy of this city. We know how good Seagate have been for Derry.”

Sinn Féin MLA, Raymond McCartney said: “I am disappointed to learn that Seagate in Derry is seeking to reduce its workforce due to global factors. Seagate is one of the biggest employers in the city and every job in the city is valued. I will be raising this issue with the new Finance Minister, Máirtín Ó Muilleoir.”

People Before Profit MLA Eamonn McCann said: “Even as 70 jobs are cut at Seagate, public sector positions continue to drain away from Derry. The jobs of benefits staff at Crown Buildings are being raffled off. Some workers have been selected for the chop by their names being drawn from a large envelope. These are workers who might have been handling claims from Seagate ex-employees.”