A NUMBER of temporarily laid off employees at a South Wicklow timber manufacturing plant have staged a protest calling on management to offer more than statutory redundancy available to them or re-employ them.
The protest took place at Woodfab in Aughrim which has continued operating on a smaller than usual scale since a fire gutted the main log processing section last August.
At the time a total of 65 employees were placed on temporary layoff with the option of taking statutory redundancy which is two week's pay per year of service.
Speaking to The Wicklow People employee Christy Keogh said that remaining workers feel they have been kept in the dark and that a restart date of 2012 is not sufficient information.
' There has been no communication for a long time. The statutory offer is not enough for people that have worked there for years. Many of us cannot afford to accept it and we have no clear idea of when we might be back at work. They have been working away without us,' he said.
Managing Director, John Brady however says that Woodfab has been open and honest with all employees and has given them as much information as possible.
'We still have to source finance for a rebuild which we fully intend to do. The insurance is not happy yet. We are looking at a total redesign and we have to source proper tailor made machinery. We hope to have this out to tender by May. It was like I lost a part of my life when the fire happened,' said Mr. Brady.
'We have not kept anyone in the dark. We are offering statutory packages and we have told staff that they have as good a chance as anyone of getting their jobs back when we are rehiring.