6 September 2007 Edition

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Nuacht na nOibrithe

Young mother awarded €25,000

A 21-year-old mother of one, Lesley Richardson from Tullyallen, County Louth was awarded €25,000 by an Employment Appeals Tribunal after suffering abuse from her employer, Roy Smith of Avant Shipping Agencies, Santry, Dublin.
Richardson was on maternity leave and attended a Christmas work-party where Mr. Smith branded her a “floozy and a stay-at-home mother”.
Richardson told the tribunal that she was “very happy” when she commenced employment at Avant in September 2005. However she maintained that this had changed after she informed her employers that she was expecting her first child.

Minister denies knowledge of job losses in Drogheda

Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Micheál Martin has denied that he had any knowledge that Coca-Cola were planning on axing 256 jobs at their Drogheda plant. The company announced last week that it would close its Drogheda branch and move 90 of its employees to factories in Ballina and Athy, however unions worry that this may mean the employees having to accept lower pay and conditions. It emerged that the Industrial Development Authority has known that there were problems in the branch for some time. A spokesperson for the Minister has said, “The Minister did not have advance notice of the Coca-Cola announcements.”

CWU call off protest

A protest by at least 50 BT employees who are members of the Communications Workers’ Union was called off this week. The staff members claim that BT refuse to recognise their union and that the company refuse to treat workers North and South equally with staff in the Six Counties that are already represented by the CWU.

IWU picket restaurant

The Independent Workers Union placed a picket on a Polish restaurant this week after discovering that the business was operating a “Mock Day Trial” scam. The scam involved a prospective employee working without pay from morning to night, then to be informed that they were unsuitable for the position at the end. With the high levels of people seeking employment they were able to have a constant stream of people who they did not have to pay.
Ray O’Reilly of the IWU said, “It is going on everywhere. There are thousands of people in this situation in Dublin, it is a major problem. Employers take advantage of these people because they have a language barrier and they don’t know their rights.” The picket was removed when the issue with the restaurant was resolved. 

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