A DECISION to reportedly dismiss around 30 workers who took part in a protest outside a North-East Amazon warehouse has been met with further demonstrations this week.

Marking the third day in a row, campaigners hitting back at a sub-contractor employed to finish off the site at the Follingsby Max in Gateshead returned on Wednesday.

It comes as campaigners, including those from Rank and File, had originally alleged that two sub-contractors had employed 'unskilled' labourers, instead of qualified electricians.

Read more: Sub-contractor accused of using 'unskilled' work to finish Amazon Gateshead 

At the time, and as they protested outside the site last Wednesday, they claimed health and safety was being put at risk, and the quality of the build jeopardised.

One of the sub-contractors, SSE Enterprise Contracting denied the claims saying all of its workers are 'suitably' skilled, while SIS Systems has not yet provided a comment.

The Northern Echo: The scene in Gateshead today Picture: JIM SCOTTThe scene in Gateshead today Picture: JIM SCOTT

But after it emerged that around 30 workers for SIS Systems had since been reportedly dismissed as a result, campaigners today said they would "fight" for a resolution.

Read more: Amazon sub-contractor dismisses up to 30 workers after protest in Gateshead 

At the picket this morning, one worker, who wishes to remain anonymous, told The Northern Echo they were now campaigning for their jobs to be reinstated.

He said: "We are going to keep coming back until they get their jobs back.

"We just want to get them their jobs back, we want that job offer, some will have already found new jobs, but we want that offer to be there for them."

The Northern Echo: Campaigners had been there since the early hours of Wednesday morning Picture: JIM SCOTTCampaigners had been there since the early hours of Wednesday morning Picture: JIM SCOTT

Another worker, who also did not want to be identified, claimed the 30 workers had been dismissed unfairly and under 'wrong' circumstances.

He said: "On Friday at 12pm, 30 guys from SIS received an email from an agency telling them they had one hour to get their tools and get off the site and not to return. 

"They were warned if they did anything about it, full weeks money would be withheld."

Campaigners at the site today echoed previous concerns over the alleged use of 'unskilled' workers in favour of qualified electricians in order to carry out electrical work.

One worker said their use "undermined" the trade and placed health and safety at risk as labourers are not-equipped with the skills.

They said: "There are labourers who are saying that they don't want to do the work, they are saying they are not qualified to do this.

"The sub-contractor just say oh 'you can have a quick run through', and some are happy do it because they think it's a boost to their career.

"But in reality, people have had to do apprenticeships and become qualified to do this work safely."

The Northern Echo: There was a police presence in the area Picture: JIM SCOTTThere was a police presence in the area Picture: JIM SCOTT

The Northern Echo understands that talks between the main contractor, TGW and the sub-contractors involved in the demonstrations took place this morning.

That followed from protests which have been taking place outside Amazon Gateshead since Monday, with campaigners taking to blocking site entrances on Tuesday.

But saying they would take a "peaceful" approach today due to the talks being held, they said they expected a resolution to be reached by mid-afternoon.

However, The Echo was later told that such talks appear to be ongoing as a resolution has not yet been reached. 

A spokesperson for TGW said: "TGW continues to work with all parties towards a resolution. At the moment we do not make any further comments."

A spokesperson for TGW previously said that the firm would commit to helping and investigating the concerns in order to "clear up" the incident.

They said: “The allegations were raised against a subcontractor of one of our suppliers, who is contracted to perform electrical assembly. TGW commits to help investigate and clear up the incident quickly and to ensure that the sub-suppliers comply with British labour law.

"To achieve this goal, TGW is in contact with the organisations involved.”

The Northern Echo:

Amazon previously said that the matters relate to the contractors directly, which it said it expected all to ensure their workers are suitably trained. 

An Amazon spokesperson said: “This matter concerns a small number of contractors working at the Gateshead site and had no operational impact on the construction works currently taking place.

"We expect the contractors to ensure their workers are suitably trained and undertake all work according to industry standards.”

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