UK Twitter staff gave three days to choose representatives before job cuts

Twitter workers in danger of losing their jobs in the UK have had three days to appoint a representative for a formal consultation on their employment.

The social media company began widespread staff cuts around the world on Friday, with suggestions that up to half of its 7,500-plus employees could be eliminated.

Workers in the UK have been told that the company intends to inform and consult with employee representatives prior to potential layoffs, as required by employment law.

An email sent Saturday to staff from Twitter’s human resources department said they had until 9 a.m. on Tuesday to appoint any current employees.

A maximum of 10 representatives can be nominated, with an election to be held if more than 10 nominations are received, according to the email.

Representatives will be expected to attend consultation meetings and help communicate between the company and relevant employees.

But Mike Clancy, general secretary of the Prospect union, which represents thousands of tech workers, including Twitter staff, described the trial as “a complete farce.”

He said membership among Twitter workers has “grown rather rapidly” since new owner Elon Musk announced job cuts.

Mr. Clancy described the situation as the “digital P&O” – referring to the shipping company, which was widely condemned after firing nearly 800 crew members without warning in March and replacing them with cheaper temps.

Twitter offices in London (Aaron Chown / PA)

Musk is thought to want to drastically reduce the company’s costs after completing its acquisition of the $ 44 billion (£ 39 billion) platform last week, as he tweeted “we have to pay the bills somehow.”

On Friday night he said, “As for Twitter’s curtailment in effect, there is unfortunately no choice when the company is losing over $ 4 million a day.

“Everyone who quit was offered 3 months’ layoff.”

His head of security later said the job cuts affected about 15 percent of the trust and security department, compared to about 50 percent of company-wide cuts.

Prospect wrote to Secretary of Affairs Grant Shapps urging him to intervene in a letter saying: “It is totally unacceptable that someone should be treated this way.

“I hope you will agree with me that the government needs to make it clear to new Twitter owners that a digital P&O would not be acceptable and that no one is above the law in the UK, including the big tech barons.”

Simon Deakin, a law professor at Cambridge University, said that if 100 or more employees are fired within a 90-day period, the company secretary must be notified 45 days prior to the first firing.

Where there are more than 20 but less than 100 potential losses, the period is 30 days.

Staff were told that all received an email by 9:00 PST (16:00 GMT) on Friday, with those affected by the cuts intended to receive the message on their personal email address rather than on that associated with their work.

Some have since taken to Twitter to confirm they will leave the company, with some revealing that they have been disconnected from their work laptops and internal messaging systems.

Twitter employee Simon Balmain told Sky News: “We all received an email last night saying there would be a large staff reduction and the email stated that if we were fired, it would go. to our personal email and otherwise to our work email.

“And it was about an hour later, in the early hours in the UK, like 2am, that I noticed that my work laptop had been remotely wiped and that my email access and Slack access had both been revoked.

“And then I got in touch with some colleagues and it seemed like a lot of people were seeing the same thing.”

A BEIS spokesperson said: “We are watching with interest what is happening on Twitter.

“While we cannot comment on individual cases, we expect companies to treat their employees fairly and our thoughts are on those who have lost their jobs.

“There are clear rules that companies must follow when making large numbers of redundancies, which include consulting with staff and notifying the redundancy service.”

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