Ex-mayor demands help for WH Smith workers under redundancy cloud
By Barrie Hudson - 3 July 2020
A former Swindon mayor has called for a 'back to work' budget following the announcement by WH Smith that 150 jobs are at risk.
Workers in Swindon and London face redundancy
Junab Ali, who represents the Central ward on Swindon Borough Council, is Swindon Labour's new economic spokesperson for the authority.
He was reacting to the announcement by WH Smith that 150 office workers at the firm's head offices in Swindon and London face a redundancy consultation.
Councillor Ali, who was the borough's 2018-19 mayor, said: "Our thoughts are with the WH Smith employees and their families who are affected by this announcement.
"Sadly, this week has seen one job losses announcement after another - with thousands of people being made unemployed.
“As we emerge from the current COVID-19 crisis, the scale of the economic crisis will become clear. That’s why we need a Back to Work budget, one that helps create, support and protect jobs.
"There has to be a laser-like focus on jobs in our economic recovery, and we hope that Swindon Borough Council will work with us on ensuring that we give workers and businesses in Swindon the crucial support they need.”
WH Smith is the latest retail giant to announce potential or actual job losses in the wake of the Coronavirus lockdown.