HMV staff end sit-in at Limerick stores

Anne Sheridan

Reporter:

Anne Sheridan

HMV staff at two Limerick outlets have ended sit-ins in the stores after receiving guarantees from the receivers that they would be paid at the end of this week.

HMV staff at two Limerick outlets have ended sit-ins in the stores after receiving guarantees from the receivers that they would be paid at the end of this week.

About a dozen members of staff occupied one unit at the Crescent Shopping Centre and 14 others held a sit in at the Cruises Street branch in the city for four days. Workers at the two stores had not been paid since December 21, but the receiver Deloitte has made a commitment in writing all that wages will be paid by this Friday, January 25.

In a statement from “the former staff of HMV Cruises Street”, they stated that they had reached a settlement regarding wages for all 300 members of HMV Ireland staff.

“This achievement would not have been possible without the overwhelming support of the Limerick community, the Trade Unions Association especially Michael McNamara, numerous local businesses and the advice and experience of several local TDs, namely Kieran O’Donnell, Willie O’Dea and Jan O’Sullivan,” they said.

Robyn Long, Kildimo, who worked with HMV for four years, said the support from the public was “amazing”. “Ordinary people had been ringing in from home telling us to keep up with what we are doing. Bands have played outside the store to promote awareness of our cause,” she explained.

Deputy O’Donnell complimented the workers on their approach to the talks, and said he has had talks with the receiver to find a buyer for the HMV Ireland and secure these workers’ jobs.

Sinn Fein city councillor Maurice Quinlivan said the staff in Limerick showed “courage and determination to ensure that they were granted their entitlements. “I am sure most people in Limerick are proud of the stand that these mostly young people have taken,” he said. He said the Government must take steps to ensure that workers will be protected if the company they for goes into receivership. “It is not good enough that people have to occupy their workplace to ensure that they receive their due entitlements,” he said.

HMV has 16 outlets in the Republic and just under 300 staff.