Date Released: 06 February 2017
SIPTU members are conducting a third day of strike action at Tim Hastings Volkswagen in Westport, County Mayo, in a dispute concerning the failure of management at the car dealership and garage to pay redundancy to workers or implement a Labour Court recommendation.
SIPTU Shop Steward, Brian Vahey, said: “We began our strike action on Friday (3rd February) and will maintain our work stoppage until management agree to implement the full terms of the Labour Court recommendation. Since we began the strike we have been overwhelmed with the level of support from the local community. People have regularly delivered refreshments and food to the picket line or signaled their support as they drive past.
“The support from the local community has been in stark contrast to the treatment of staff by the company. No redundancy entitlements have been paid to the workers let go and management has stated that it will not respect a recommendation of the Labour Court concerning the case. This attitude has really left us with no option but to take strike action.”
SIPTU Organiser, Ashling Dunne, said: “In August, management implemented the compulsory redundancy of three of our members in the garage. However, the process by which these workers were selected to be made redundant was not acceptable to our members.
“After initially refusing, the company agreed to attend the Labour Court following a vote for strike action by our members. The Labour Court issued a recommendation that one of the workers made redundant be given the choice of returning to his employment or accept an ex-gratia redundancy payment. An ex-gratia redundancy payment was also recommended for those workers whose positions were genuinely made redundant.”
SIPTU Services Division Organiser, Ethel Buckley, travelled from Liberty Hall in Dublin to show solidarity with her members on the picket-line at Tim Hastings Volkswagen today (Monday, 6th February).
She said: “Management has written to the Labour Court advising it that it does not intend to implement its recommendation. In response, SIPTU members in the company unanimously voted for all out strike action. SIPTU representatives are and will remain available for discussions should management wish to resolve the issue.”