Two years on Government still failing the ex-Debenhams workers

09 April 2022
  • EWSS ending this month. Redundancies will happen.
  • Government must publish collective redundancies Bill without delay.

Labour spokesperson on Employment and Workers Rights, Senator Marie Sherlock has today (Saturday, 9th April) said that two years on from the shocking closure of Debenhams that the government has done little to ensure no other workers fall victim to the same set of cruel and life changing circumstances.

Senator Sherlock said:

“Two years ago, the ex-Debenhams workers were sacked by email when the stores closed overnight. In the weeks that followed, the Government rightly said that it was determined to ensure that no other workers would find themselves in a similar situation in which they would be effectively locked out of their workplaces. There were high on promises but low on delivery.

“We are two years on now and there is a real urgency needed to put protections in place. The employment wage subsidy scheme will cease by the end of this month and redundancies are coming down the track. That’s the reality. Ten months ago, the Government published its plan of action and we were told there would be an employment law review group and amendments would be made to company and employment law, but we have not seen them.

“We need to see a real urgency in the work of that employment law review group because it is moving at a snail’s pace. It is simply unacceptable that workers have been left waiting so long. Government must get a move on and publish the protection of employment (collective redundancies) (amendment) Bill without any further delay.”

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