Sunday 15 December 2019

Staff stage sit-in protest at petrol station

WORKERS mounted a sit-in protest at a Cork filling station after they demanded assurances about their wages and redundancy entitlements as part of its closure.

The Texaco/TexOil station on Cork's North Ring Road, which opened over 30 years ago, closed its doors on Tuesday evening.

The six staff were asked to meet directors of the leasing firm involved, Highway Ltd, and were informed the station was closing with immediate effect.

Staff assisted with the removal of cash resisters, computers and security camera systems, but refused to leave the building until the issue about outstanding wages and redundancy was clarified.

Gardai were called to the premises in Ballyvolane yesterday morning, but officers departed after ruling it was a civil matter.

Jacinta Power, who has worked at the station for 24 years, said the workers only wanted their fair entitlements. "It is only a few weeks to Christmas and all we want is what is owing to us," she said.

Store manager Deirdre Cregan said staff were prepared to sit-in for as long as it takes to get what they were owed.

Another worker, Danny Falvey, said they were already prepared for a lengthy protest with air beds, sleeping bags and food stuffs delivered.

He said workers were also buoyed by the overwhelming support they had received from locals and from customers of the filling station.

"Everyone knew that the station wasn't going well for a while. We hadn't a fuel delivery for a few weeks so it wasn't exactly a surprise," he said.

The outlet had effectively been operating only as a convenience shop over the past month. Highway could not be contacted for comment last night.

Irish Independent

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