Labour court to rule on department store redundancy payments

Union bosses and management at one of Dublin’s oldest department stores will go to the Labour Court in a disagreement over redundancy pay, it emerged tonight.

Union bosses and management at one of Dublin’s oldest department stores will go to the Labour Court in a disagreement over redundancy pay, it emerged tonight.

Frawley’s in the Liberties is to shut down on June 2 with the loss of some 40 jobs, but despite the imminent closure, no agreement has been reached on arrangements to compensate staff members for their loss of employment.

Store management and the trade union Mandate will attend a hearing in the Labour Court on Friday after they failed to reach agreement in the Labour Relations Commission.

Mandate’s Joe Donnelly believes there is an opportunity for management at Frawley’s to show some real appreciation to staff members.

“Management have already stated they wouldn’t have got this far without the staff,” he said. “It’s time now, they showed their gratitude to those staff members.”

Frawley’s occupies 34 to 36 on Thomas Street and the site is estimated to be worth approximately €10m.

It has been trading for more than 115 years, making it one of the oldest department stores in the capital. Its closure is being blamed on a downturn in business due to a dramatic change in retail pattern.

A number of shop staff have spent their entire working lives at Frawley’s, giving between 30 and 40 years service.

Many are disappointed that no progress was made at the LRC, and feel there should have been an improved redundancy offer made by the company.

“We’re not sure what’s going to happen now, but the offer we were given is totally unacceptable,” said one staff member.

“It’s an insult to those of us who have worked here and given the best years of our lives to this company. We’re hoping something more favourable comes out of the Labour Court.”

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