There was an attempt to remove stock from Debenhams in the Square, Tallaght on Wednesday evening. A truck hired by the liquidator KPMG tried to remove goods via the Tesco loading bay rather than the one assigned to Debenhams, where workers have maintained a picket for over six months.
Despite intervention from the Gardaí, the workers were determined to prevent the truck leaving with stock and mounted a blockade of the loading bay with the support of members of the public. It was a tremendous act of solidarity from the working class who recognise the rotten treatment Debenhams’ workers have received at the hands of the company and the liquidator.
The driver of the truck, which had been hired by a third party, claimed he had no idea he was moving Debenhams stock. As a member of another union he apologised to the workers and agreed to offload the stock and left with the truck empty.
All workers realise that a victory for the Debenhams workers is a victory for them. Other bosses will be watching and waiting to treat their workers in much the same way especially now that the Covid-19 Pandemic is entering a second wave. This poses a severe threat to the capitalist economy with the possibility of further health restrictions in the run up to the Christmas shopping season.
Militant Left call on all trade unionists to show solidarity with the Debenhams workers and their union, Mandate. Only pressure from the organised working class can force the government to stop its farcical pretence of support for the workers. If they had any really interest in assisting the Debenhams workers’ they would legislate immediately to implement the Duffy-Cahill report.
And it will only be when the Debenhams workers receive the redundancy agreed with their employer, the redundancy they earned through decades of hard work creating profits that now rest in Debenhams’ accounts in the UK, that this dispute will be resolved.
Debenhams workers in Tallaght are even more resolved now to keep up their picket and will be watching all loading bays in the Square to ensure there will be no more underhanded attempts to remove stock like the one this week.