Thank you for taking the time to contact me about the recent mass redundancies by P&O. The way in which the staff, many of whom had worked for P&O for decades, were informed they no longer have a job was completely unacceptable, and I agree with the Government’s calls for P&O to reconsider.
While this is fundamentally a commercial decision for the company, the Government’s priority must be the employees who have just lost their positions. Ministers in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), have deployed additional staff to support those who have been impacted by the redundancies.
Another priority of the Government is the safety of ships operated by P&O. While it’s too early to make any judgements, the turnover of experienced staff may have safety certifications implications. As I understand it, Ministers at the Department for Transport have instructed the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) to review this, and I eagerly await any developments.
As you may be aware, due to these redundancies, the Hull to Rotterdam crossing has been suspended by P&O, along with other routes. I have been assured that alternative provisions are being provided by other operators.
The Government is also reviewing all contracts it holds with P&O and its parent company DP World.
If you know anyone who has been directly impacted by the actions of P&O, please encourage them to contact my office, and I will do anything I can to help.
To read the Minister’s statement to the House of Commons on this issue, please follow this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/po-ferries-staff-redundancies-and-suspension-of-services
Thank you for taking the time to contact me.
24 March 2022