CHANGE: TATA STEEL, PORT TALBOT, WALES, UK
The steelworks have been part of the scene in Port Talbot for decades. The plant has benefited from some significant investments in recent years, but Tata Steel has faced difficulties. The plant is said to be losing millions of pounds a week. Port Talbot’s Tata Steel is the biggest plant in the UK, providing well-paid jobs to approximately 4,000-strong workforce that are difficult to replace. It is estimated that every job in the steelworks supports another four jobs in the local economy.
Despite negotiations with the government, Tata Steel has made 5,000 job cuts in the UK over the 2015. In 2016, it confirmed it is considering selling off its entire UK operation but no buyer is in sight yet. The patience of many employees eventually ran out. Many have left their jobs, some were laid off with severance packages, some were not able to get redundancy. The town is in despair. Everybody is breathing the depressive air, waiting for what is going to happen. The stories of people in Port Talbot are very different. Despite the situation, they are still hoping for a better future and trying to help each other.