During the Covid-19 crisis, essential workers are on the frontline in many different sectors. NHS staff, transport workers, retail staff and many more are all playing a vital role in keeping society running, yet are being treated with utter contempt by the Tories and capitalist governments the world over.
Debenhams Ireland workers were sacked by email on Easter Thursday — just two days after the company had assured them their jobs were safe. Such callous indifference to workers — some with decades of service going back to Roches Stores and the launch of Debenhams into Ireland in 1996.
On 5th March, Flybe – Europe’s largest regional airline – collapsed, with 2,400 workers suddenly losing their jobs. Workers and passengers were given virtually no warning. Flybe sent texts out at 2am, telling anyone booked on one of their flights not to travel to the airport. No alternative flights were arranged and many workers and passengers were left stranded, unable to get refunds.
In an unprecedented move, 98% of members at a consultative meeting of Community Pharmacy Northern Ireland (CPNI) – representing pharmacy contractors – voted to take industrial action over a funding crisis which they described as leaving “crucial frontline services” at “breaking point”.