People Before Profit Cllr Shaun Harkin:
“There’s been shock across the city that the popular Foyleside Eason’s store will close. We believe this is an unnecessary action that should be challenged.
In the last couple of months companies have shredded thousands of workers from their books. Too many boardrooms are making decisions based on what’s best for shareholders without any concern as to the broader impact it will have on communities and the local economy.
Many large employers were bailed-out throughout the pandemic through a massive government intervention. We, along with trade unions, are working with and representing many workers facing redundancy – and we believe far too many companies are trampling on workers rights by using the pandemic as an excuse. Everything must be done by companies and government to protect jobs and protect communities. Everything possible needs to be done to protect Derry and the North West from economic fallout of the pandemic.
The Stormont Executive parties will pay lip service to workers rights and trade unions unless they face pressure from below. What will matter most will be action by workers. Debenhams workers in the South have organised themselves to demand the company and government respect its contractually agreed commitments. We encourage all workers to join a trade union if they are not already in one.
At this week’s full meeting of the Derry and Strabane Council we will be calling for all Cllrs to support initiating action to block ‘smash and grabs’ on workers rights and opportunistic redundancies.”