Louth TD Gerry Adams raised the job losses at Dundalk brewery with the Taoiseach during Taoiseach’s questions last week in the Dáil.
During a debate on the government’s recent discussions with the social partners, Deputy Adams challenged the Taoiseach on the Government’s failure to protect workers and jobs and to legislate against the efforts of some employers not to fulfil employment commitments to workers.
The Louth TD asked Mr. Kenny if he had any discussions with the social partners to “avoid the recent events involving workers, such as those in Vita Cortex, La Senza and Lagan Brick, where they have had to go to extraordinary lengths to vindicate their rights and entitlements?
“At the stroke of a pen, 250 workers in Diageo in Dundalk and Kilkenny were told they were out of work.
“The occupation of Vita Cortex continues. Clearly, the owner of that company has a responsibility to pay the workers what they are owed.”
Deputy Adams pressed the Taoiseach on what the Government will do to ensure these workers’ rights are protected and whether it will introduce legislation to ensure no employer can in future treat workers in this disrespectful and exploitative fashion.
On Dundalk Brewery Mr. Adams said: “Diageo, which is a hugely profitable company, makes billions in profits and sells Harp and Guinness globally as Irish brands, closes a brewery in Dundalk with the stroke of a pen. Some workers have given 25 years to 30 years of service. It is not fair.
“The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation was actually in the Guinness headquarters at St. James’s Gate when this announcement was made and there was not a bleat from the Government about it.
“Some 250 workers, their families and all the small business which thrive in the local economy will be robbed of that income.”