Thursday, 3 September 2009

Injunction granted against union's 'scabs' posters

AN injunction has been issued by the High Court against senior members of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) and SIPTU after posters were plastered all over Athy on Thursday alleging that local man Brian Dooley was attempting to break a strike in Dublin Port.
Mr. Dooley, a candidate for Fianna Fail in the recent local elections, works as an Operations Manager for a company in the port called Marine Terminals.
Last Thursday, August 27, a group of people put up a significant number of posters in Athy featuring a picture of Mr. Dooley, and a headline that read "WANTED For Crimes Against Irish Workers".
There has been ongoing industrial strife at the company since the early summer.
The poster went on to claim: "Your "failed" elected representative is actively involved in strike-breaking at marine terminals in Dublin port."
Brian Dooley replaces Dublin Dock workers with scabs from Kildare, Belfast, the UK and Clydeport in Scotland.
"Brian's brothers Cathal Dooley and John Dooley and James O'Connor, Chris Hutchinson and Simon Doody, make up the Kildare strike-breaking team at Marine Terminals."
Employed on lower wages and weaker terms and conditions these scabs contribute nothing to our country while Dublin Dock workers face being sacked by Brian Dooley," the poster's text concluded.
The vast majority of posters came down as quickly as they went up.
"Business people in the town came out and removed them," Mr. Dooley told the Leinster Leader.
"They rang me about it at the time," he said, adding that the news came as a shock to him.
"And for that I have to say thank you to the people of the town."
He said he couldn't comment any further while the matter was before the courts.
On Monday, August 31, the High Court granted an interim injunction to Mr. Dooley's employers Marine Terminal against SIPTU, ICTU and a number of officials and workers from seeking to harass staff who are continuing to work.
Marcus Dowling, counsel for Marine Terminals, told the court that the flier was a clear attempt to intimidate those named in it to stop working during the strike.Noting that the injunction was granted an ex-parte (one side only) basis, a spokesperson for SIPTU told the Leinster Leader that the union would be legally represented when the case returned to the High Court tomorrow, Thursday, September 3.
"The matter is with our legal team," the spokesperson Frank Connolly explained, saying that this prevented him from commenting further or confirming or denying whether SIPTU or any of its members were involved in the posters in Athy.

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