“The workers united will never be defeated” was the chant heard on Maylor Street in the city centre today as the occupation of Debenhams came to an end.
Sit-ins began in Cork and Dublin on Tuesday following a redundancy deal that was negotiated between liquidators KPMG and Mandate Trade Union.
Eight former staff members of the company from across the stores at Patrick Street, Mahon Point Shopping Centre and Tralee finished their sit-in of the store at lunchtime today.
Former staff entered the building at Patrick Street on Tuesday morning and were permitted by gardaí to stay provided they did not go on to the shop floor.
After making their way out of the store to join protesters on Maylor Street, where members of the public were also out in force to show their support for the workers, Valerie Conlon said that former staff members “will continue taking action until there’s something done” and that “this war is worth winning”.
The former staff members are seeking a settlement of four weeks redundancy pay per year of service.
Ms Conlon said that after 154 days of protesting and picketing that they have shown that they are “not going to sit down” but rather continue to fight for their rights “for as long as it takes”.
She said that she had no intention of breaking the deal she had made with gardaí not to occupy the Patrick Street store for longer than three days but that further action is being planned.