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Largo Foods to shed half its workforce in Gweedore – What’s Mary Coughlan going to do about it?

3 April, 2009 - by Pearse Doherty TD


Following this afternoon’s announcement by Largo Foods of 123 job losses in Gweedore Sinn Féin Donegal Senator Pearse Doherty has called on Táiniste Mary Coughlan to immediately intervene noting “the Minister’s record to date on protecting jobs and supporting employers has been abysmal. If she sits back as largest employer in Gweedore sheds half its staff then in my view her position as Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment will have become untenable.”

The Donegal Senator added:

“Largo Foods is the largest employer in Gweedore and at a time of soaring unemployment the people of this county simply cannot afford the Tánaiste’s laissez faire approach to keeping and creating jobs.

“My colleague Gráinne Mhic Geidigh as Regional Chair of Údarás na Gaeltachta has this afternoon called for an emergency meeting of its regional board to discuss the jobs losses at Largo Foods The number one priority for the Tánaiste and indeed Údarás na Gaeltachta must be holding onto these jobs. We need to keep Gweedore at work.

“Last week Sinn Féin launched a comprehensive job strategy document with over 80 proposals on how jobs can be saved and created. We argued that there are still huge opportunities if the right plan is put in place and real leadership is shown.

“One of Sinn Féin’s key proposals was the establishment of a €300 million jobs retention fund to subsidise workers in small and medium sized enterprises struggling to keep on their employees. This would be a very practical way to keep people in work in good businesses that are temporarily struggling during the current extraordinary economic climate.

“The party also called for a body to be set up to actively pre-empt job losses by going into companies where jobs are in jeopardy to trouble shoot, offer advice and supports similar to the functions carried out by the Irish Credit Corporation (ICC) in the 1980s.

“If Mary Coughlan does not immediately intervene to halt the job losses in Largo Foods then she has no option but to question her position as both Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment. Fianna Fáil and the Green’s are failing workers at every turn. They are the people who got us into this mess, and nothing they are doing suggests they are going to get us out of it. New ideas need new people.” ENDS

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