Cork Debenhams workers had 'no problem' with Gardaí taking names and addresses at protest

Cork Debenhams workers had 'no problem' with Gardaí taking names and addresses at protest
Deirdre Power protests at Debenhams while keeping her social distance outside the store on Maylor Street, Cork. Sgt. Denis Barry and Garda Nodwell were on duty at the event. Picture Dan Linehan

GARDAÍ took names and addresses of former Debenhams workers protesting outside the Patrick’s Street store in Cork today.

Protestors say they were happy to provide them with the information, which was needed to ensure they were within the 2km radius of their homes.

This was the second socially distant protest staged by Debenhams workers in two weeks to highlight their grievances about the permanent closure of all Irish stores earlier this month.

Valerie Conlon, Mandate Trade Union Rep in Debenhams, told The Echo they got plenty of support for their cause again today, while there were also additional Gardaí in attendance in comparison to last week’s protest.

Former staff at Debenhams protest outside the store on Maylor Street, Cork. Included are Erica O’Mahony, Madeline Whelan, Grace Hall, Valerie Conlon, Deirdre Power, Sarah Gleeson, Claire O’Leary, Gillian McSweeney and Amanda Lyons. Picture Dan Linehan
Former staff at Debenhams protest outside the store on Maylor Street, Cork. Included are Erica O’Mahony, Madeline Whelan, Grace Hall, Valerie Conlon, Deirdre Power, Sarah Gleeson, Claire O’Leary, Gillian McSweeney and Amanda Lyons. Picture Dan Linehan

“They did take our names and addresses, but they had to do that so we had no problem with it,” Ms Conlon said.

Debenhams workers in Ireland have been left in limbo since an email on April 9 from the company stating that Irish stores weren’t expected to reopen after the Covid-19 pandemic, and that liquidators would be appointed to the Irish business.

Around 700 people are understood to have lost their jobs between the two Cork stores alone, at Patrick’s Street and Mahon Point Shopping Centre.

Liquidators KPMG are expected to be appointed tomorrow, Thursday, at the High Court.

Last week’s protest was calling for fair treatment of workers and an adequate redundancy package.

Former staff at Debenhams protest outside the store on Maylor Street, Cork, while keeping their social distance. Included are Erica O’Mahony, Madeline Whelan, Grace Hall, Valerie Conlon, Deirdre Power, Sarah Gleeson, Claire O’Leary, Gillian McSweeney and Amanda Lyons. Picture Dan Linehan
Former staff at Debenhams protest outside the store on Maylor Street, Cork, while keeping their social distance. Included are Erica O’Mahony, Madeline Whelan, Grace Hall, Valerie Conlon, Deirdre Power, Sarah Gleeson, Claire O’Leary, Gillian McSweeney and Amanda Lyons. Picture Dan Linehan

“It was really more about asking the Government to do something to help the economy after Covid-19 because there are going to be so many people on the Live Register,” Ms Conlon said.

“They have sorted out a Covid payment which is good, and they have done everything that they can, but they have to start thinking about afterwards now,” Ms Conlon added.

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