Workers offered half sale price of Fulflex plant
Unions and management in the doomed Fulflex plant in Galvone Industrial Estate are still some way from agreement in talks over redundancy payments for workers.
However, the company has agreed that half the proceeds from the sale of the plant will be given to the workforce as part of any deal.
Talks between the company and SIPTU have been ongoing since the closure was announced on April 3. In the meantime, the 108 workers who are facing unemployment are waiting to see what redundancy deal they can expect.
A SIPTU official has this week hit out at the
company over what she claimed was its failure so far to offer more than the statutory redundancy of four to five weeks per year worked.
SIPTU branch organiser Karen O'Loughlin said the terms offered by the company to date were "very basic".
"We accept they didn't make a profit last year but they did for the 35 years before they decided to move out of Limerick and will continue to do so once they move elsewhere," she said.
"When they do move they will have to give decent redundancy to people who served there for so many years, in some cases all their working lives." "Very basic terms have been offered so far, in and around the basic statutory entitlements of four or five weeks per year of
service, which is outrageous in my view. The calculations are convoluted but don't amount to much once you examine them." But in a statement issued this week, the board of the company said it had two main considerations in formulating the redundancy package.
"Firstly, the Board wanted to provide all the employees with the financial breathing space to find alternative employment. Thus the majority of employees will be receiving one years net pay. Even employees with no statutory entitlement will be getting extra notice.
"Secondly, the Board wanted to recognise the commitment of its many long service employees. Thus the Fulflex factory of 100,000 square feet on over four acres will be
sold and the net proceeds will be shared 50:50 with the employees in proportion to their service.
"Additionally, the Company has also arranged outplacement assistance, retraining and extended health and life cover," a company spokesperson said.
The two sides were due to meet the Labour Relations Commission this Friday for further talks on the matter.
The elastic products manufacturer has been operating in Limerick since 1969. In announcing the closure, its parent group, the Moore Company, cited intense global competition and a fall in the price of elastic products as the reason for the closure. Because of these market pressures, the company was on course to make large losses for 2006.