Remploy revelations – MSP repeats call for independent inquiry into closure plans

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An independent inquiry into the mishandling of Remploy factory closures is the only way forward an MSP has said, following revelations that a takeover bid for Remploy Springburn that could have saved jobs was blocked.

Today’s Daily Record (Tuesday) reports that Middlesbrough wheelchair factory Greentyre had sought to save jobs in Springburn by merging the two businesses, but were prevented from doing so.

SNP MSP Bob Doris has previously raised the concerns of Greentyre owner Colin Scarsi over the handling of his bid with the UK Government’s Minister for Disabled People Esther McVey.

It was announced yesterday that Remploy Springburn will close in mid-January following a collapse in talks between the preferred bidder for the factory and the Department of Work and Pensions.

Commenting, Glasgow SNP MSP Bob Doris – who has repeatedly called for an independent inquiry into the sales process – said:

“The entire handling of this process has been shambolic from day one. The Westminster Government has serious questions to answer over its abject failure to find a solution that will protect jobs at Remploy Springburn.

“We need answers on why this process has gone so disastrously wrong with such damaging consequences, and following today’s revelations only an independent inquiry will be sure to provide those answers.

“When I wrote to Esther McVey asking her to investigate, she told me to write to Remploy.  In other words, she wanted Remploy to investigate Remploy.

“The entire process has been flawed from the start and has seen the Westminster Government simply wash its hands of any responsibility towards workers at Remploy.

“That is simply not good enough.  Jobs could and should have been saved and the least that workers at Remploy deserve is for the entire closure process to be put on hold until an inquiry is held.

“We need answers and the Government at Westminster cannot shirk its responsibilities to workers at Remploy any longer.”