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Decision to Force Redundancy of Google Workers Must Be Reversed

23 March 2023

In response to an announcement by Google that redundancies will be compulsory, Labour Party Leader Ivana Bacik TD has called on the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment to back those affected, and push for a voluntary model, instead.

Deputy Bacik, who is a TD for Dublin Bay South, said:

“My thoughts, and those of my Labour Party colleagues, are with those employed by Google who have today learned that they face compulsory redundancy. These redundancies will be compulsorily applied, despite calls for a voluntary redundancy first approach by workers, the Financial Services Union, the Labour Party, and others. Many of those impacted by this concerning development are constituents of mine, and they have been conveying to me their anxiety in recent weeks. In particular, I have heard from a number of individuals who may be forced to leave the state if made redundant, due to the consequent revocation of their work visa.

“In recent months, we have learned of new redundancies from Google, Meta, Amazon, Twitter, PayPal, Stripe, Salesforce, Intel and Microsoft. The confirmed job losses combined are likely to amount to approximately one thousand people, with details of additional cuts still due to be announced. Clearly, the sector is in chaos in Ireland, and it is causing immense uncertainty for the thousands of people who rely on the industry for a living.

“It is not just workers who are directly employed by these companies which are affected either. The cumulative effect of these cuts are devastating for families and for people who are indirectly employed by the tech industry are too. Combined with spiralling food, fuel, energy, and housing prices, and the shameful lifting of the eviction ban at the end of this month, this is a very worrying time for working people in the sector, and indeed across the country.

“Workers from all sectors are reading weekly news of redundancies. There is palpable fear in the representations made to me by my constituents. Minister Coveney must back these workers, and send a message to employers and employees alike that all avenues must be explored to protect the livelihoods of working people in Ireland. I am calling again on Google to reverse its decision, and to work with its employee council to avoid the need for compulsory redundancies altogether. Furthermore, I reiterate the advice of Labour to all employees, which is that trade union membership is one of the best ways to mitigate against the worst effects of cutbacks by employers.”