New laws required to prevent “another Clerys”

21/05/2013. Croke Park 2 Public sector pay talks. SIPTU Vice President Patricia King, pictured with Padraig Heverin, SIPTU Nursing President, talking to the media after emerging from the Labour Relations Commission after completing the all-night Croke Park 2 public sector pay talks. Photo:Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

Directors of firms who act against their employees' best interests should be banned from holding their positions under new laws proposed by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions



7 July 2015

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Irish Congress of Trade Unions general secretary Patricia King has suggested that laws need to be changed to prevent companies closing abruptly in the same manner as Clerys did last month, and that directors of firms who act in the same manner as those behind the closure should be banned from occupying similar positions for five years.

The Irish Examiner reports that the appeal for new legal framework was makde at a meeting for minister for jobs Richard Bruton, who responded by saying the proposals were now “under active consideration.”

Under ICTU’s proposals, employers would be required to enter a 30-day period of consultation with workers before redundancies could occur, with redundancies considered void if this agreement was not honoured. The suggestion comes as SIPTU said it has not received any acknowledgement of its request for a meeting with the new owners of Clerys, Natrium Ltd.

Speaking on RTE Radio 1’s Sean O’Rourke programme, ICTU general secretary Patricia Kind said that the Employment Portection Act needed to be amended to ensure companies could not treat their employees as those at Clerys had been treated. “When you do that, ruin people’s lives like that, there has to be a price paid,” she said. “If you behave like that, are you fit to be a director?”

Business minister Ged Nash described Natrium’s decision not to meet with him as “extraordinary”, while taoiseach Enda Kenny said that amending company law on the back of the Clerys controversy was a “complex” area.





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