Springs staff could stage sit-in over re­dun­dancy

NO AGREE­MENT UP TO 70 WORK­ERS TO LOSE JOBS BE­FORE CHRIST­MAS

Bray People - - News - Mary FOG­A­RTY

UP TO 70 staff mem­bers at Pow­er­scourt Springs, who face a bleak Christ­mas af­ter they all lose their jobs at the end of this month, may stage a sit-in at the health farm if their re­dun­dancy de­mands are not met.

Ne­go­ti­a­tions are un­der way, but a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the staff has said that af­ter two meet­ings with own­ers, they are no closer to reach an agree­ment.

Em­ploy­ees are in­censed that the of­fer on the ta­ble is for the ab­so­lute min­i­mum en­ti­tle­ment - two week’s pay for ev­ery year of ser­vice.

‘If no con­clu­sion is reached it looks like staff will have to take some kind of action,’ said one em­ployee.

‘The Gov­ern­ment gives 60 per cent of this back to the com­pany,’ said a ne­go­tia­tor on be­half of the work­ers. ‘Many of the staff are of short ser­vice and on low pay. It would not be un­rea­son­able to in­crease the of­fer to four weeks.’

Ac­cord­ing to a staff mem­ber, the fa­cil­ity was bought 12 years ago for IR£1.9m and the fig­ure be­ing men­tioned with re­gard to a sale is up to three times that amount.

‘We are ex­tremely un­happy,’ said a staff mem­ber. ‘We have been loyal and worked hard and are not get­ting recog­ni­tion for that.’

She added that there are no jobs out there at the mo­ment. ‘As far as I know, no­body has se­cured al­ter­na­tive em­ploy­ment.’ Pow­er­scourt Springs is owned by Paul and Fiona Hanby, and Pa­tri­cia and Ger­ald Kin­sella. Mr. Kin­sella was un­avail­able when his of­fice was con­tacted by the Bray Peo­ple yes­ter­day.

The ne­go­tia­tor for the work­ers claimed that in meet­ings own­ers have told him that the com­pany has been strug­gling and there will be lit­tle or no money left over af­ter com­mit­ments to the banks are ful­filled.

He said that while other places, such as the toll bridge, have given pack­ages of up to nine weeks, they are not looking for that amount.

‘Even four weeks wouldn’t cost the com­pany that much but would soften the blow for the staff, based on the price they will get for the busi­ness and the lack of al­ter­na­tive jobs for the em­ploy­ees,’ he said. ‘We are not seek­ing to be un­rea­son­able or greedy.’

The rep­re­sen­ta­tive added that while the sale of the spa may not yield as high an amount as ru­moured, there is a buyer in ne­go­ti­a­tions with the own­ers.

The Pow­er­scourt Springs health farm.

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