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Dublin: 16 °C Thursday 30 October, 2014

“I don’t think we will see the money.” – Dublin bakery staff staging sit-in over back wages

Gardaí have been called to the Paris Bakery on Moore St.

Updated 11PM

WORKERS ARE STAGING a sit-in at a bakery in Dublin after it closed during the week with employees claiming they are owed wages of over €55,000.

Gardaí had been called to the Paris Bakery and Pastry Ltd on Moore St as workers refused to leave.

At 9.22pm tonight, staff said that they had met their employer and were “making some progress”.

The Migrant Rights Centre of Ireland (MRCI) are today in negotiations with the owners in an attempt to secure back wages.

The employees say that they were initially told that the store would be closing at the end of June but recently found out that that was being moved forward.

When they were told that the lease on the the premises was instead ending this month they went to their employer on Tuesday to ask for what they say they’re owed.

They were given no assurances and today when they attempted to stage in a sit-in they found that they were locked out of the premises with the owner in the process of removing equipment.

They have since gained access to the bakery.

One of the employees Anissa Hosany says that she is one of the longest serving workers in the bakery having been there over two years. She told TheJournal.ie that there was never any problem with payments until last November when the began being delayed.

“I don’t really know whats going happen, we have unions supporting us and we haven’t been given any answers,” she says. “I don’t think we will see the money.”

We are all worried about our money, our futures; some of us can’t pay the rent and are worried about supporting our children at this time. One of our colleagues has become homeless as a result of this.

Staff at the store include waiters, managers, bakers, chefs and kitchen porter according to the MRCI.

The protesting staff are also asking wholesale customers of the bakery including the Science Galley and the Westbury Hotel to not accept goods until the dispute has been settled.

Support

The general secretary of the Mandate trade union is John Douglas is also occupying the building along with the employees. Douglas says that the situation is similar to that which occurred before in the case of workers at Vita Cortex, La Senza, HMV and others where workers were forced to take “extraordinary actions to receive unpaid entitlements”.

“At the moment we’re stuck up the front of the building where it’s freezing cold because there’s no heating and there’s a threat that the power might be disconnected,”explained Douglas. “There’s ongoing difficulties with workers who are not allowed to use the toilets but are trying to negotiate with gardaí”.

- First published 6.20pm

Read: “We’re being made fools of” – Limerick staff sit-in enters 17th day >

Read: ‘A hospital is not just bricks and mortar’ – staff determined to save Mount Carmel >

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