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Thomas Cook workers to protest Tory conference to urge government to guarantee redundant staff get paid

PROTESTING Thomas Cook workers and Labour figures will urge the government to “do the right thing” on Monday and guarantee payment for the travel agency’s redundant staff.

Hundreds of Unite members are set to protest outside Manchester Library opposite Tory Party conference next week.

Staff had been meant to receive their final wages on Monday, but the Insolvency Service has now said they will be treated as creditors of Thomas Cook — meaning that it is unclear how or when they’ll get paid.

The workers will also be protesting against Transport Secretary Grant Shapps’s failure to save their jobs, having accused him last week of not comprehending Thomas Cook’s economic instability.

The agency collapsed on Monday September 23, leaving 150,000 passengers stranded and thousands of workers without jobs.

Unite national officer for civil air transport Oliver Richardson said: “The workers who should have been paid have received nothing and have to still somehow pay mortgages, rent, bills and food.

“While other European countries acted to preserve airlines, the UK government allowed the entire company to crash.”

Labour Stockport parliamentary candidate Navendu Mishra and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham look set to join the rally.

Mr Mishra said: “It is a disgrace that the Conservative government is refusing to intervene in the collapse of Thomas Cook.

“With 9,000 British workers out of jobs, families will be facing serious hardship with Christmas only three months away.

“Andrea Leadsom has the power to instruct the Official Receiver to pay Thomas Cook workers the wages they’re owned — I call on her to do the right thing.”

TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes welcomed the announcement of a parliamentary inquiry into the company’s collapse.

He said: “Not only bosses but ministers must be held to account for their actions in needlessly allowing Thomas Cook to go to the wall and with it 9,000 jobs.”


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