Staff return to work at Irish Cement’s Limerick plant

Nick Rabbitts

Reporter:

Nick Rabbitts

STAFF have today returned to work at Irish Cement following the end of a seven-week long strike at the Mungret plant.

STAFF have today returned to work at Irish Cement following the end of a seven-week long strike at the Mungret plant.

This comes after workers struck a deal with management which will see them paid the money they are owed.

Production at the Mungret plant ground to a halt after more than 50 workers walked out in a dispute over payment of monies they felt they were owed, with some workers awaiting up to €9,000 each in increments.

A picket had been in place since early April outside Irish Cement in Mungret, with 22 Limerick staff also targeting the annual general meeting of parent company Cement Road Holdings (CRH).

But on Friday at midnight, this ended, and staff will return to work today.

The resolution comes after talks in Dublin between a conciliator, workers and management at the plant, which employs 80 in Limerick.

It is understood Irish Cement requested a confidentiality clause be put in place, precluding any release of the agreement.

But the workers will be paid the money they are owed.

SIPTU utilities and construction division organiser Christy McQuillan said workers voted by a large majority to accept the proposals which followed a mediation process.

“The efficient and professional manner in which the mediation talks were overseen by Joe McDermott, in his role as an independent chairman, was pivotal in resolving this dispute. The agreement, which contains procedural commitments on future engagements between the company and worker representatives, will be registered with the Labour Court,” he said.

The industrial action was supported by the Irish Cement group of unions, which includes SIPTU, the TEEU and Unite.

It arose from the company’s refusal to adhere to a Labour court recommendation on the payment of monies outstanding.

Local SIPTU organiser Mark Quinn thanked members of the public for their “unwavering” support and “goodwill gestures” during the dispute.

Staff at Irish Cement’s plant in Platin, Co Meath, have also returned to work this Monday morning following the same dispute.