[Sinn Fein]

3rd October 2002

Doolan calls on people to attend Smithfield rally

A major trade union protest is planned for 2pm tomorrow, Friday October 4th. It is called in support of those workers in dispute at the Irish Glass Bottle plant in Ringsend, Dublin. The workers have been in dispute with the plant's owners, Ardagh PLC, for several months now. The dispute originated when the Ardagh Glass refused to abide by a Labour Relations Court recommendation of 5 weeks severance pay per year of service for each of the workforce.

This protest has been called by Irish Congress of Trade Unions and the Dublin Congress of Trade unions with the support of all trade unions including SIPTU,BATU, TEEU and UCAT.

Ten's of thousands are expected to gather for a rally in Smithfield Dublin. The protest will then proceed to Government buildings where a letter will be handed in calling on the Taoiseach to become directly involved and ensure the speedy payment of redundancy terms agreed at the Labour Relations Court.

Sinn Fein's Representative for Dublin South East Daithí Doolan called on all workers and their families to attend tomorrow's protest. Speaking in Ringsend today he said it was important, `that the government is made realise the level of support that exists for these workers. Unfortunately it is not an isolated dispute. Workers find themselves in similar diputes in Roscommon and Dundalk. It is high time that the law changed. Currently comnpanies can get away with paying a miserly 1/2 week wages per year of service. This is wholey inadequte. Legislation needs to be introduced as a matter of urgency so as workers receive at least 3 weeks pay per year of service. This will at least guarantee some element of dignity when employees are made redundant.'

Doolan who has been an active support of the Irish Glass Bottle workers has witnessed at first hand th ecompanies blatant disregard for the workers,'time and time again the workers at IGB have been concilatory. Yet Ardagh PLC continue to ignore the Labour Court recommendation. We will not be ignored any longer. The workers, their families and our communities deserve better than this.'

The workers of Irish Glass Bottle factory will assemble at 12:30pm at the gates of the factory and march to Smithfield.

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