Ballymena-born movie star, Liam Neeson, has backed calls for urgent action to provide future employment in the rea and has urged workers to unite behind a campaign spearheaded by the ‘Unite’ union.
Jimmy Kelly, Unite Regional Secretary, welcomed the endorsement by the award-winning actor:
He said: “I want to thank Liam Neeson for his ongoing and steadfast commitment to Ballymena and this powerful endorsement of our campaign. His words have captured the spirit of the ‘Rally For A Future’ campaign launched by workers at the Michelin and JTI-Gallaher plants. This is about everyone coming together and uniting to demand a better future facing huge levels of job losses.
“Ballymena, like Northern Ireland generally, can offer a well-skilled, educated and committed labour force as well as excellent infrastructural provision. Giving up on proactively seeking foreign investment in Manufacturing is not an option.
“The Ballymena ‘Rally For A Future’ campaign is gaining momentum as more and more people express their support – already the campaign is being raised in the corridors and chambers of power. We hope that our political leaders are listening.
“We are calling for workers and the wider community to come together to demonstrate their support at the Ballymena bandstand at noon on Saturday, February 6th. We demand focussed and continued efforts to attract manufacturing jobs and investment to Ballymena and ensure a prosperous future for all”, Mr Kelly concluded.
Liam Neeson emailed his support to the union, stating:“I wholeheartedly support the Unite the union Rally for a Future, scheduled for Feb 6. Urgent action needs to be taken by the government to focus attention on the devastating loss of employment in our area. We have one of the finest, conscientious, hard-working, skilled and educated work forces in all of the United Kingdom: not to mention one of the most cultured.
“Attention must be paid! Ballymena and Northern Ireland must be made more attractive to potential international employers. They would be lucky to have such an infrastructure and powerhouse of able and willing workers. I believe that nothing less than the future of N. Ireland is at stake here. Unite, people, elected Ministers and political leaders: UNITE! Yours, urgently, Liam Neeson OBE.”