éirígí Dublin Northeast representative Ciarán Heaphey has condemned the plot by the Fine Gael/Labour Government to break strike action at Dublin Airport by bringing in the 26-County army to replace striking workers.
SIPTU are currently in discussions over possible industrial action in a dispute over the pension plan at Aer Lingus and the Dublin Airport Authority. Workers at both companies are outraged at the proposed cuts to their pension benefits.
With other trade unions and the ICTU now supportive of the proposal to down tools, there is now a co-ordinated campaign amongst the various trade unions to bring the bosses to the table.
The government coalition has responded to this not by trying to help the affected workers but instead ordered the 26-County army to be in position ready to intervene if the airports shut down.
By saying they will remove the fire service from the airport the trade unions have sent a strong message that they are serious. Without a fire service on the ground at the airport it would have no option but to shut down. The possible closure has worried the coalition in Leinster House who have advised the 26-County military to be ready to operate fire engines in a tactic to defeat the strike even though the air corps' fire crews have not received the training to run a civilian airport.
Commenting on the situation éirígí's Ciarán Heaphey has said, “This is a foul but unsurprising tactic being used by the Fine Gael/Labour coalition. The fact that the Labour Party are involved in trying to smash industrial action by concerned workers shows how far they are now disconnected from the working class.”
Heaphey continued, “The most important thing here is that the concerns of the workers at Aer Lingus and the Dublin Airport Authority are addressed by management. There is also the worrying scenario if the 26-County army are placed into the airport during the dispute that they are not trained to the level needed for a civilian airport. I would like to take this chance to encourage the workers to keep up their fight for full pension benefits.”