Labour MEP for Munster/Ireland South, Alan Kelly has vowed to lobby the EU to secure some funding under the EU Globalisation scheme for the former Waterford Crystal workers. This fund was recently used to secure €14.8 million for former staff at Dell and Banta in Limerick.
“An application has been lodged in Brussels last Friday by the Government that aims to assist former Waterford Crystal staff and I can assure people in Waterford that I will doing everything in my power to have this application passed. I will be lobbying on their behalf but we do need the Government and in particular the Tanaiste and Minster for Enterprise, Minister Coughlan to push for support for the Waterford Crystal workers and to make it a priority for her Department. It is crucial that this is at the top of her agenda, because it would mean a lot to the people who are trying to make ends meet ”, said Mr Kelly.
“The workers from Waterford Crystal were treated very unfairly and like workers from Dell and Banta, they deserve to benefit from any available EU resources”, he added.
“It is important that any resources towards the re-training of workers can be allocated towards local institutions such as Waterford Institute of Technology. The onus is on the Government to ensure these funds can come through so we need to present the strongest case possible for Waterford.
“Many of the people who were made redundant from Waterford Crystal have now been out of work for several months. It is completely understandable that these people are eager to re-enter productive employment. Many have ideas for future employment and business ventures but they need assistance to move. If EU resources are available for these people it help to make a valuable contribution to rebuilding Waterford’s economy”, concluded Kelly.