P&O Ferries has fired seven of its new agency employees after they showed up to work in breach of the company’ zero-tolerance alcohol policy.
The latest scandal comes after the company abruptly fired some 800 UK-based ferry workers in March, replacing them with cheaper agency crew.
“We can confirm that seven agency-employed seafarers who returned from shore were found to be in breach of our strict guidelines on alcohol consumption and have been dismissed with immediate effect,” a spokesperson for the company said, as reported by various news outlets.
“The safety of our passengers and crew is our foremost priority and we continue to operate a zero tolerance policy towards drinking whilst on duty.”
P&O Ferries has admitted that it may have broken the law in firing its ferry crews without notifying the British government or unions of the action. Britain’s Insolvency Service has initiated an investigation into the firings.
On Wednesday it was reported that inspectors from the International Transport Workers’ Federation were denied access to the Port of Dover to conduct welfare checks of the agency workers.
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