Article from the Sept 2004 edition, Socialist Voice

Irish Cement: Eleventh hour talks avert strike

OVER 200 workers at Irish Cement's Platin plant have voted to go on strike. The dispute centres on bonus payments and pensions and has been brewing for over a year. Workers at Platin are represented by several unions with the ATGWU being the largest. Despite only the ATGWU serving strike notice on the company, workers from the other unions have agreed to strike as well.

By Mark Hoskins

The company agreed to negotiations at the eleventh hour under the threat of strike action after having previously refused to discuss the situation with the unions, hiding behind the labour court ruling that the workers demands are outside of the "Sustaining Progress" agreement. The workers at Platin are opposed to the latest partnership agreement and ATGWU regional industrial organiser for the north east, George Conlon told the Socialist Voice that as well as the strike being about bonus payments and pensions "it is a blow against partnership".

ICTU and IBEC have proposed that Peter Cassells mediate in the dispute. But the workers can't trust Cassells who was one of the major architects of "social partnership" and will sell the workers down the river Boyne to preserve the credibility of the current partnership agreement.

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