(theaustralian) About 1600 Alcoa workers across Western Australia are likely to stay out on strike after the company refused to agree to a union claim that none of the employees could ever be made forcibly ­redundant. Members of the Australian Workers Union employed at three refineries and two bauxite mines have been on strike since last week and are scheduled to hold a mass meeting tomorrow to consider their next action. State secretary Mike Zoetbrood said he believed the workers would continue their strike unless Alcoa made a significant concession. He said the union was open to Alcoa’s proposal to remove minimum staffing levels across the five sites provided the company gave a commitment there would be no compulsory redundancies.Mr Zoetbrood said workers were concerned permanent employees would be replaced by cheaper casuals, or Alcoa would reject requests from older long-term employees to take voluntary redundancy because it was cheaper to make less experienced employees redundant. “Unless there is some significant movement by Alcoa on this, they are likely to continue to stay out,’’ he said.Alcoa said a decision by AWU members to continue industrial action would be “disappointing and unnecessary”.“It would only serve to impact employees who are members of the union through lost earnings,’’ a company spokeswoman said.She said any suggestion Alcoa intended to casualise its workforce was simply untrue. “Alcoa operates in a competitive global market and we need to be able to manage the business according to market conditions, without unreasonable restrictions,” she said. The Alcoa sites have been ­operating during the industrial action.