Vita Cortex workers lock site gates

Vita Cortex workers lock site gates

Workers protesting at the former Vita Cortex factory in Cork today said they had locked the gates of the site in what amounted to an escalation of the dispute.

Some 32 former workers at the foam manufacturing plant were today marking the 106th day since their sit-in protest over redundancy payments began.

In a statement posted on their Facebook page, the protesting workers said that "due to immense frustration at the lack of reasonable progress from various negotiations and contacts with the company owners" they had been left with no option but to lock the gates.

The move affects another business at the site - Vita Clean - which is also owned by Vita Cortex owner Jack Ronan.

The Vita Cortex workers said they had "allowed Vita Clean to operate for the past 106 days without disruption".

However a number of Vita Clean trucks were prevent from entering the site today.

The workers are now awaiting further communication from SIPTU, the statement said.

The plant on the city's Kinsale Rd was closed on December 16 last. Protesting workers are seeking the same 2.9 weeks per year of service redundancy package which they say the company paid to previous employees.

The State is covering the two weeks’ statutory payment. The workers say company owner Ronan must pay what they claim was the agreed balance, 0.9 week per year of service.

Multiple efforts to resolve the dispute via the Labour Relations Commission have failed.

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