April 29, 2020
Government must do more to ensure Debenhams workers protected at this time – Maurice Quinlivan TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Workers’ Rights Maurice Quinlivan has said that the Government must do more to put pressure on Debenhams to reach its obligations to workers in what is already a difficult time for most people, and urged Minister Heather Humphreys to do all that is necessary to ensure these workers are protected.

The comments come after the Limerick TD attended an online protest for Debenhams workers organised by Mandate Trade Union.

Deputy Quinlivan said;

“I was proud to attend today’s online demonstration alongside a number of my Sinn Féin colleagues and the many thousands more who joined on various online media platforms.

“Sinn Féin have been in constant contact with the Minister for Enterprise, and will continue to raise this matter in the Dáil until it is resolved.

“It is extremely stressful for workers to lose their jobs at any time, but right now – in the midst of a pandemic – and when people are really struggling, it is a double blow.

“Minister Humphries must do everything in her capacity to ensure measures be put in place to immediately help workers and their families at this difficult time.

“When a person loses their job, the cost of living doesn’t go away. Mortgages and rents still have to be paid, food still has to be put on the table, and families still need certainty.

“The State must ensure redundancy payments are made as quickly as possible, as the Pandemic Unemployment Payment that most former Debenhams workers are currently on, will not last forever. These workers need support and financial certainty.

“This should include a comprehensive programme of retraining and education options that are specifically designed to build on the skills of these workers.”

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