MANAGEMENT CONFIRMS 40 JOBS TO GO AT SCI IN FERMOY
Workers at the Sanmina SCI plant in Fermoy were dealt a severe body blow when management informed them on Friday last that forty jobs would go at the plant in the next thirty days.
A statement issued to the staff last Friday by Robert O’Rourke, vice president of operations and general manager of the plant stated; ‘While it is very unfortunate that we are having to take this action at this time we remain positive about the outlook for the Fermoy operation and about Ireland as a location to do business.
The redundancies we have announced today are solely driven by the demand in the marketplace for our customer products. We have a great team of employees in Fermoy which has been built over many years and will continue to have a great team after this redundancy situation. We remain committed to Fermoy and to Ireland’.
MIX OF MOODS
Some workers at the plant, who are at risk of losing their jobs, spoke with The Avondhu this week.
One man, who has three children said that 300 staff in the production and office departments were given thirty days notice, and out of this 300, 40 will lose their jobs.
The staff member added, “We all knew this was coming. Following recent reports in The Avondhu, the company has been temporarily laying people off since then. There is a mix of moods here at the moment. It’s like when your dog runs away and you don’t know if you will get it back. Some people are numb, as they are the sole breadwinner and have families to support.
“Others can’t wait to get out of the place, as one minute we are told to go home for a month and then we get a call two weeks later to say come back in, only to be sent home a week later.”
“People don’t know whether they are coming or going and there is no job security. Mortgages and bills still have to be paid, and with Christmas around the corner, there are a lot of worried people in SCI at the moment.”
Another member of staff told The Avondhu that many people believe that the end is near for the plant.
“People are being laid off all over the shop, and what do the company do? They pay someone to come in and give us a talk on keeping morale up! What a joke! How can we keep morale up when we don’t know if we will be in a job by Christmas?
"Things are just getting worse and worse, and a lot of us feel that this is just the calm before the storm and that SCI will slowly wind down and go and do business somewhere less expensive.”
Fermoy town mayor, Cllr Pa O’Driscoll expressed his sadness following the announcement.
“The news is devastating for those who are of risk of being made redundant, especially considering the time of year and the unfortunate fact that the employment and further education opportunities available to people are limited.
“The loss of productive jobs in the North East Cork region over the last decade needs to be addressed. Having an IDA site on the Dublin Road, and a factory ready to be occupied on the Cork Road is no comfort for those who are unemployed or are at risk of being made unemployed.
“Productive jobs must be created, both indigenous and from foreign direct investment. Nationally we need to take steps to make Ireland competitive, and locally we have to put pressure on the relevant state bodies to prioritise the North East Cork region for industrial investment.”
Cllr O’Driscoll added that companies like Sanmina SCI provide a form of employment that has a spin-off effect for local retail businesses.
“The town council and the business community in Fermoy are acutely aware of the challenges facing retailers, and news like this shows why we must come up with more innovative ways to make Fermoy attractive or the loss of these jobs will be further compounded by a loss of business in the town,” he concluded.
Cllr Noel McCarthy echoed these comments and added that he is very concerned for the future of the plant going forward.
“I am deeply sorry to hear about the loss of jobs, especially at a time when people are struggling as it is. I ask that management at the plant help the people who have/are being temporarily laid off to contact the social welfare and ensure there is no delay in people getting their money.”
Cllr McCarthy added, “Extended families are already under pressure due to the current economic climate and people are not in a position to be lending money until dole comes through. SCI has always been the major employer in Fermoy and I really hope they will continue to do so. If there is anything we at the Fermoy Town Council or the Cork County Council can do to help we will be more than willing to do so.”
Cllr Tadhg O’Donovan agreed with Cllr McCarthy and added that it is important that the employees made redundant must not feel isolated and the possibility of retraining must be given priority.
“While it is 40 redundancies SCI is still Fermoy’s biggest employer and every effort by all concerned must be pursued in support of the company and hopefully sooner rather than later we can achieve the job numbers previously employed by the company.”
Thursday 11th November 5:31pm