370 Job losses in Shannon a devastating blow to a region already in trouble – Breen

July 24th, 2009 - Pat Breen

Element Six state that doing business here is just too expensive

Mid-West Taskforce must revise its report on job stimulation in the region

The decision by Element Six to close its manufacturing and distribution activities in Shannon, causing 370 people to loose their jobs is devastating news to the employees and families involved as well as being a severe blow to industry in the region, according to Fine Gael Clare T.D. Pat Breen.

“The cost of the Governments failure to sustain competitiveness in the Irish economy has been paid in full by 370 employees of diamond material manufacturing company, Element Six, who have been left jobless today. Despite concerted efforts by the company to restructure its business and the implementation of a series of cost-cutting measures, the company has been driven out of Shannon by the high cost of doing business in Ireland.

“The Government have utterly failed to realise that any job strategy must involve job sustainment as well as job creation. Initial reports that over 100 jobs would be lost was bad enough, but confirmation that 370 people will walk out the gates of Element Six without a job and without the prospect of getting one is deeply distressing to all involved. The effects on adjacent businesses and suppliers will be felt very shortly and could lead to even more job losses in the area.

“The Government must do all it can to provide workers with retraining opportunities and ensure that any redundancy deal is fair and reflects the loyal service workers have given to the company. It must ensure that the remaining 80 jobs are retained and that the existing Research and Development departments are assisted in expanding into the future. The Mid-West taskforce, chaired by Denis Brosnan, has submitted an interim report to Government but these job losses will require a review of its findings and how employment can be stimulated in the region. The role of the taskforce is increasingly critical and they must succeed where the Government have failed.