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Special church service for steelworkers in Port Talbot

Sun 24 Apr 2016
By Aaron James

A special church service is being held later in Port Talbot in solidarity with the workers hit by the Tata Steel crisis.

The service at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Aberavon was initiated by Revd Rick Hayes, the chaplain of the Tata Steel plant in Port Talbot - the biggest in the whole of Britain.

As well Bible readings, prayers and a sermon from Revd Rick Hayes, the charity Christians Against Poverty will also speak to the congregation.

A children's choir and an all-male voice choir will also contribute.

Last week, the government announced it would spend hundreds of millions of pounds to help a buyer take on the Port Talbot steelworks, which Tata Steel is selling because it is no longer profitable.

Chinese imports, energy prices and environmental regulations are all said to have been factors in the industry's financial losses.

In return, the government would take a 25% stake in the business.

Some have said taxpayers should not be aiding an industry which is not financially viable, while others have said the potential loss of jobs coupled with the strategic importance of steel means taxpayer assistance is a good idea.

 

Revd Peter Davies, the pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, told Premier: "The steelworks is part of the fabric of the local community and has been such for many decades.

"So that uncertainty does have a negative impact on people in the local community, but the churches are there to both listen and be of support.

"People were encouraged by the fact that there might be financial investment in the steelworks.

"Be it from the public sector or the private sector, what is important is that there is that financial input which provides hope for the workers and their families."

Listen to Premier's Aaron James speaking to Revd Peter Davies here:


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