Jon Cruddas regularly writes a column for the Barking and Dagenham Post. This month Jon spoke about the new jobs coming to the Dagenham Ford Factory.
"It was a huge blow to the local area in 2012 when Dagenham Ford closed its Tool Room and Stamping Plant, making 750 local residents unemployed in the process. For a while it seemed like everything was pitted against us; the closure of the historic factory, a massive spike in unemployment and the prospect of a super-prison early in 2013. However this year has seen a spectacular turn-around with investment into the local area at an all-time high, and unemployment at a four year low.
"Ford Britain have just announced that, having secured a new Panther Engine contract they will be recruiting workers for the Engine Plant in Dagenham. The first of these new diesel engines will be produced in Dagenham towards the end of the year with 350,000 per annum to follow.
"I will be meeting with the Chairman of Ford Britain in the coming weeks to ensure that as many of the 250 jobs as possible go to local people. The factory is part of our history and it is important that we remain a working part of it. You can apply for the jobs here: www.randstad.co.uk/ford
"This announcement follows on from the growing investment into the Sanofi site at Dagenham East, meaning that moving into 2015 we should see a huge boost to the local economy and a further drop in unemployment. Whilst all this news is welcome it is vital that we continue to fight for and secure good terms and conditions for all new staff. There is still a lot that the unemployment figures don’t show us, such as those working part-time and on zero hour contracts issues that Barking & Dagenham Council, local trade unions and myself are all currently working to address.
"I am extremely pleased that alongside the businesses moving to the Sanofi site a manufacturing institution like Ford, which was once the lifeblood of Dagenham is also still invested in the area."