Unite welcomes effective closure of non-essential construction sites to help halt COVID-19 spread

Unite logo white out of redFocus must now turn to protecting workers’ incomes and precarious workers

March 28th: Unite, which represents construction workers throughout Ireland, today (Saturday) welcomed the confirmation this morning by Minister Simon Harris that non-essential construction sites are being effectively closed as part of a package of measures announced by the government last night.  Construction workers had highlighted the impossibility of adhering to hygiene and social distancing requirements on sites.

Commenting, Unite Regional Officer for Construction Tom Fitzgerald said:

“The news that non-essential construction sites are being closed as part of this wider package of measures will come as a relief to tens of thousands of construction workers who were concerned not only about contracting the COVID-19 virus themselves, but also about transmitting it to their families and communities.

“Construction workers are eager to help in the national battle against this pandemic, which is why our call to close non-essential sites specifically excluded essential works, including works relating to health and pharmaceutical facilities or similar connected with the current crisis, as well as works connected with the maintenance of essential utilities and emergency assistance to households.

“With regard to the construction sector, Unite’s focus will now turn to protecting construction workers’ incomes and ensuring that precariously employed workers are protected”, Mr Fitzgerald concluded.

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