Kerry Group workers face possible vote on strike action

SIPTU trade union warned this week that it may ballot its members for strike action if the Kerry Group is not willing to attend talks at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) regarding proposed job losses at the company’s centres in Charleville and Naas. Management in the Kerry Group announced last month that it plans to outsource 150 jobs to Malaysia and Mexico, the jobs being primarily in the finance, human resource, data management and regulatory areas of the company.
Speaking this week, SIPTU Organiser Terry Bryan said: “The proposed job losses could not come at a worse time for the workers involved and their families. Many of these workers face the prospect of unemploy-ment, with the potential of an economic recession following the devastating effects of Covid-19 on employment levels.
“In discussions with the company, agreement could not be reached on the proposed job losses, the redundancy terms, the selection criteria and the transition arrangements. In line with accepted State resolution procedures, we referred the matter to the WRC. However, the company has declined the invitation from the WRC to enter talks.
“We are calling on the Kerry Group to reverse its decision and engage at the WRC with the union with a view to finding a resolution. Failure on the company’s part to do so will leave SIPTU with no other alternative other than to consider a ballot of its members for industrial and/or strike action.”