Local union activists calls on local political leaders to establish taskforce to respond to employment crisis in Fermanagh
Tuesday 11th August: Unite Regional officer with responsibility for the workforce, Gareth Scott, confirmed that union representatives had yesterday met with workers at stricken Lisnaskea contractor, P. Clarke & Sons Ltd:
“Workers at P. Clarke & Sons Ltd told us that management had given them notice of redundancy affecting at least twenty workers. We are very concerned that management has failed to contact Unite, as representatives of the workforce with a recognition agreement, to consult on these redundancies and the clear impact they will have on employees. We will not stand idly by as management fail to recognise workers’ rights and meet their obligations.
“Workers claim that they have been paid by a third party for a number of weeks and there is mounting speculation that the company may stop trading or be transferred to alternative ownership before the end of the week. It is critical that the union is engaged in this process to guarantee the interests of the workforce”, Mr Scott concluded
Chair of one of Unite’s two Fermanagh-based branches who was present at the meeting, Padraig Murphy, expressed the concerns of the local community:
“Over the past decades we have seen a significant loss of manufacturing employment in Lisnaskea with the closure of Adria, Dairycrest Creamery, Cheese Factory, Watson Stones and the Sir Richard Arkwright factory. Now we are facing a threat to one of the few large, remaining employers, P Clarke & Sons, at the threat to more than ninety jobs.
“This is one of the leading road surfacing operators in Northern Ireland renowned for the quality of its tarmac work as the rock quarried by the company is some of the best in the region. We can’t allow these jobs or this company to simply disappear.
“While we know that many of our political representatives are on holiday – there is an urgent need for them to take action to save this employer. Those facing unemployment aren’t on holidays – we need a local employment taskforce to address the employment crisis in Fermanagh and specifically in Lisnaskea”, Mr Murphy concluded.
For further information contact Gareth Scott, tel. 07764 292005, or Donal O’Cofaigh (Unite NI Press Office) on tel. 07810 157926.
Unite is the biggest trade union in Britain and Ireland with 1.72 million members across private, public and community sectors. It represents the majority of the workforce at P Clarke & Sons Ltd.