People Before Profit Cllr Shaun Harkin said,
“We are shocked and horrified at the scenes of Gardai violence directed at Debenhams workers in Dublin throughout the night and continuing today.
We were proud to have Debenhams workers from Dublin and Cork join us in Derry as part of their campaign. People across the island and world have been inspired by their campaign for fair treatment.
Rather than supporting the workers demands the Fianna Fáil Taoiseach has given the green light for Gardai to smash up workers peaceful pickets.
We are calling on the SDLP to demand their Fianna Fáil partners stop the violent police attacks on workers peacefully attempting to protect their rights. We’re calling on the SDLP to end its silence on Fianna Fáil’s refusal to see the workers modest demands protected.
A People Before Profit motion supporting the Debenhams workers campaign and opposing ‘smash and grabs on workers rights’ was passed by Derry and Strabane Council with SDLP support. Those demands are still unmet.
There is now a clear attempt to use police violence to smash the will of the workers.
We are calling on everyone to speak up now in defence of the Debenhams workers and in defence of workers rights.”