Date Released: 25 June 2014
SIPTU has welcomed the announcement today (Wednesday, 25th June) of a major investment in the Bausch and Lomb plant in Waterford by the company’s owners, Valeant.
SIPTU representatives attended a meeting today with Valeant Senior Vice President, Dennis Asharin, and Vice President, Angelo Conti, at which the company announced that there is to be a major investment in new technology and machinery for the Bausch and Lomb plant.
Last week, SIPTU members voted overwhelmingly in favour of cost savings proposals at the plant, which saw a 7.5% reduction in pay and the elimination of bonuses but secured the future of the contact lens manufacturing facility.
Sector Organiser, Alan O'Leary, said: “Today’s announcement of a major capital injection into the Waterford site is very welcome news. Our members made a very difficult decision last week to sacrifice some of their income in order to secure a future for the plant. This was a courageous and brave decision by the workers. In many respects it was a significant leap of faith by the workers in the hope that the parent company would reciprocate and invest in their futures.”
Alan O’Leary added: “SIPTU is seeking to enter into early negotiations on the possibility of reducing the number of voluntary redundancies as we understand that the company envisages a rollout of proposed redundancies over a two year period. SIPTU will be looking for due consideration to be given by management to a situation where if the market conditions improve over the next two years then this should limit the proposed job cuts. SIPTU will also be engaging with Bausch and Lomb management to maximise a 10% gain sharing agreement that will mitigate some of the workers’ lost income.
“SIPTU will continue to monitor Valeant's on-going commitment to invest in the workers futures. We welcome the decision by Valeant today to invest in the Waterford site and hope that this decision is merely the first step of many positive steps into the future."