“We will see if the State does something for us or if we are left like Goodyear and Michelin on the floor”: an employee of the Bridgestone factory in Béthune

“We will see if the State does something for us or if we are left like Goodyear and Michelin on the floor”: an employee of the Bridgestone factory in Béthune

Céline and Jérôme will lose their two salaries with the announced closure of the site in Pas-de-Calais. A disaster for this couple who are trying to hide their pain in front of their children… Extract from the magazine “1:15 pm on Sunday” of November 22, 2020.

VIDEO. "We will see if the State does something for us or if we are left like Goodyear and Michelin on the floor" : an employee of the Bridgestone plant in Béthune

The Japanese tire manufacturer Bridgestone refused in mid-November the rescue plan for the Béthune site, in Pas-de-Calais. The factory of 863 employees, specializing in the production of tires for small vehicles, is due to close in 2021. Céline has been working there since 2008 and Jérôme was hired in 2005. “We have to stand up and keep our spirits up because they are behind us, said the young woman to the magazine ‘1:15 p.m. on Sunday’ (replay), talking about their two young children. We know we have to keep smiling and pretend nothing is happening in front of them. ”

“It’s not obvious when you see in the newspapers and hear on TV that Bridgestone is closing its doors with 863 workers outside, families on the floor, specifies the mechanic. We hear it over and over, over and over… No, it’s not easy to manage. ” Jérôme adds: “We’ve been working together for fifteen or twenty years. It’s a family. We all know each other well, we have fun every day. Now it’s done. It will close. I wonder what we’re going to do next if we can’t find a job. There are some who are divorced and who are on their own… ”

“At the moment, we are angry”

“It’s a mourning, it’s the end of Bridgestone, it’s the end of a story. Everything goes out, it’s final ”,Celine said, quickly wiping a tear that runs down her face, so as not to be seen by one of her children whom she is taking for a walk with her partner. We will now have to consider two retraining in the same home. A whole life to reinvent for this couple who did not expect this double penalty, hoping to make their entire career in the company.

“Since September 16, 2020 [annonce de la fermeture], we were in a sad state of mind, in doubt, disappointed. And since the new announcement [12 novembre], right now we are angry. Now we are waiting for government aid, the famous stimulus plan we are talking about so much. I believe what I actually see. And so far, I haven’t seen much. We will see if the State is really doing something for us or if we are left like Goodyear and Michelin on the floor, without follow-up… ” asks Céline. Of the 863 employees of the company, 40 have just formed a collective to take the managers to courtin order to slow down the closure of the Béthune site.

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