INN journalists vote for action against closure
9 October 2009
NUJ members at Dublin-based Independent Network News (INN) have voted to take industrial action in protest at the company's decision to close operations and impose compulsory redundancies.
In the ballot of members at the news agency, 88 per cent agreed to take action up to and including strike action in pursuit of their demand for a withdrawal of the threat of redundancies on 30 October.
The NUJ has asked the company to refer the dispute to the Labour Relations Commission (LRC) and to explore alternatives to wholesale redundancies. The ballot for industrial action will be implemented in the event of the company's failure to cooperate with the LRC.
Séamus Dooley, NUJ Irish secretary, said:
"This overwhelming vote in favour of industrial action reflects the deep anger at the contempt in which they have been held by the board and shareholders of INN. The company has failed to engage in meaningful negotiations with the NUJ and has used stalling tactics at every level.
"This afternoon we learned that the Chief Executive, John O'Connor, is no longer in that post and staff now face an uncertain future in a rudderless ship. The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment is still considering the NUJ request for an investigation into the proposed redundancies.
"Our investigations suggest that the company has significantly more than the minimum number of employees required for a collective redundancy situation.
"In a collective redundancy situation the company is obliged to consult workers within a defined period and there are very specific obligations which have not been met. INN is insisting that they do not meet this threshold but there is evidence to the contrary which must be determined by the Department as a matter of urgency."
The threshold at which the collective redundancy rules apply is 20 employees.
The closurer of INN will be discussed at the Irish Delegate Conference of the NUJ in the Marino Institute of Education on Saturday.