More Limerick staff are told: do not park at work

Nick Rabbitts

Reporter:

Nick Rabbitts

Under fire: The Jetland shopping centre, where workers have been told they cannot park
STAFF at other stores in the Jetland Shopping Centre have been told they cannot use the car park in the Centre.

STAFF at other stores in the Jetland Shopping Centre have been told they cannot use the car park in the Centre.

This comes after Dunnes Stores barred its staff from using its 1,500-space car park over the Easter trading period.

Fears have been raised by the Mandate Union over the safety of vulnerable workers who start their shifts at unsociable hours.

The Jetland SC is owned by Dunnes Stores, which means it ultimately makes the call on who can and who cannot use its car park.

While Dunnes is the anchor tenant, employing 120 people, some 50 staff work in BB’s coffee and muffins, Doc Martins Pharmacy, Elvery Sports Store, and a Bank of Ireland branch.

A source at one of these stores confirmed staff had been instructed not to park in the Jetland Shopping Centre car park over Easter.

Dunnes Stores has operated on the northside for more than 20 years.

When the Jetland centre opened in the mid-2000s, Dunnes Stores opened in its current guise.

Gerry Sheeran, senior planner at Limerick County Council, which gave the Jetland SC permission, says the only stipulation the planning authority laid down was on the number of car parking spaces provided at the store. It is, he said, up to Dunnes how it chooses to use these spaces.

Anne-Marie Stacke, Ballynanty, worked with Dunnes Stores for 16 years.

A former shop steward with Mandate, she is angry at the action taken - and says she will take her trade elsewhere this weekend.

Contributors to our social media channels have said they will do likewise.

“There is no way in the world 1,415 spaces are going to be filled over a weekend at any one time. This issue is just showing what they think of the staff: it is a horrible thing to do to them,” she said.

Ms Stacke says staff cannot park their cars in the nearby housing estates, because they do not have residents parking discs, and would risk council fines.

Dunnes Stores did not respond to a request for a comment as the Limerick Leader went to press on Tuesday evening.