Sunday, February 15, 2009


Bleak day for SR Technics

On Wednesday the Labour Party introduced a motion on Child Poverty. We are concerned that there are still almost 80,000 children living in families with poverty. The debate was well attended, with many Senators from Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and the independents contributing. I opened and closed the debate on behalf of the Labour Party.

I got back to the office in time to catch the Ireland vs Georgia match. I had hoped to get along to the match but couldn’t because of the debate. The last time I saw Georgia play was in Tbilisi during the 2002 World Cup campaign, in May 2001. They were playing at home to Italy and I was working in Tbilisi at the time. They have a toughness of spirit which, matched with their skill, makes then tough opponents to play.

One of our candidates for the Ashbourne area, Niamh McGowan, held a fundraiser on Thursday night. There were about 60 people there, including Deputy Eamon Gilmore and Senator Alex White. Alex, myself and Eamon said a few words to the audience as did Niamh. While we were speaking the news came in that the latest poll has us at 24%.

As someone who did a lot of statistics at college, and who uses them on a daily basis, I don’t get too excited by polls. At the moment the country is in the middle of the eye of the storm. Thousands are losing their jobs, workers are facing new levies on their income and the behaviour of the banks has infuriated the Irish people. It truly is a GUBU moment and I think that’s being reflected in the poll.

The loss of almost 2,000 jobs on Thursday was one of the bleakest days on the jobs front that the country has experienced. SR Technics employ 1,200 workers in the airport and the closure will have serious repercussions for local economies across north county Dublin and south and east Meath.

I spoke to workers on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and it’s clear that things are not over yet. The workers firmly believe that the company can be saved and I’ll be doing what I can to help explore alternatives to the current drastic situation.

It was the goverment in the first place who are mostly responsible for the closure of srt. They shoould have stepped in and prevented the aer lingus contracts from leaving the Dublin base. The writing was on the wall when that decision was made. I doubt the goverment will do anything in the end but if they were to save the remaining jobs in line maintenance and facilities then maybe just maybe the goverment could regain a small shred of respect??
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