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Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Employment in Limerick Factory.

Thursday, 13 October 1966

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 224 No. 9

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11.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan asked the Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries (a) the number of people at present employed at the sweet factory of the Condensed Milk Company, County Limerick; (b) the number laid off and the compensation paid to them for years of service; and (c) what plans, if any, are proposed for its expansion.

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan The number at present employed at the factory of Cleeves Confectionery (Limerick) Ltd., is 53, a reduction of 35 as compared with a year ago. The reduction is due mainly to the employment of fewer casual staff because of a falling-off in sales. Casual employees are recruited on a temporary basis when required [1316] and no question of compensation for loss of employment arises. No other staff were laid off during the year but one employee died, two retired on age grounds and one left of his own accord to take up other employment. Ex gratia payments amounting to £235 were made to the two employees who retired and to a dependant of the deceased employee.

There are at present no plans for the expansion of the factory but a comprehensive examination of its prospects is currently being made.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan In view of the falling off in the sales of this industry in Limerick, would the Minister undertake an investigation into its running in order that we may improve the employment situation in Limerick? Because of the potential in the Condensed Milk Company and the fact that the raw material is ready at hand, the Minister should insist that a sales drive be instituted immediately.

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan The matter is being examined very closely.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan If it is, how does the Minister account for the falling-off in sales, the reduction in employment and the number on a casual basis every year? Surely this industry must become competitive with other industries of a similar nature? It is the Minister's duty to bring it up to standard.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Patrick Hogan Zoom on Patrick Hogan The Deputy is making a speech.

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan This is a business problem.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan This is a Government concern. Have you fallen down on your business? Surely it is the Minister's job to see to it that it is competitive?

Mr. Crotty: Information on Patrick J. Crotty Zoom on Patrick J. Crotty Not the first time.

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan This is precisely what I am saying. It is being closely examined.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan When may we expect a result from this examination?

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan In due course.

[1317]Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan We had many an inspector in Limerick lately and nothing has happened. This is an issue much greater than anything that has happened in the past. I shall keep pressing until we get an answer in the near future.

Mr. B. Lenihan: Information on Patrick J. Lenihan Zoom on Patrick J. Lenihan I shall convey the Deputy's views to the Minister.

Mr. Coughlan: Information on Stephen Coughlan Zoom on Stephen Coughlan The future Taoiseach.


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