NIC-ICTU Wrightbus statement from Owen Reidy

26 Sep 2019

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After a discussion with trade union colleagues attempting to support over 1,200 Wrightbus staff, ICTU Assistant General Secretary Owen Reidy said:

“This is something which should not be happening. Wrightbus has been forced into administration and thousands of decent livelihoods are under threat when we take into account the 1,700 additional supply chain jobs dependent upon that company.

“The company should have engaged with the Union much earlier to explore alternatives. Those alternatives are diminishing into fewer jobs of less quality and lower pay for such loyal staff. That loyalty deserves to be rewarded, especially as the Prime Minister has form with Wrightbus, and boosted his profile at photo-opportunities at the now shuttered Ballymena plant.

“It is essential that the state steps up if an alternative buyer cannot be found to save these jobs, or to utilise those skills in energy-efficient public transportation. Like the workers at Harland & Wolff, the workers at Wrightbus should be viewed as investments in any Green New Deal, and not a cost to the Exchequer.

“The trade union movement stands ready to support our friends in Unite in any way we can.”