A real jobs disaster

As job losses go, the announcment this week in Fethard of the closure of Dawn Meats is enormous in scale.

As job losses go, the announcment this week in Fethard of the closure of Dawn Meats is enormous in scale.

Over 100 jobs are to be lost when the plant closes in December - that’s one tenth of the town population.

That’s similar to 2,000 jobs in Clonmel or tens of thousands in the big cities.

It’s a move Fethard and its environs can ill afford.

Dawn Meats were good employers but the company say, that after exploring all the options, there was no alternative to closure.

It was the last major employer other than nearby Coolmore Stud while a number of smaller shops and businesses have closed in recent months.

Local TD and Minister of State Tom Hayes has already been in talks with the owners as well as with other agencies.

It’s a development he could have done without so soon after taking office in the Department of Agriculture - a major employer in the food sector closing a plant.

But his position might be fortuitous if he can play some role in either saving jobs or securing a replacement.

Mattie McGrath TD has already called on him to do so, saying the closure is partly due to a failure by he Government to come to terms with the recent horsemeat scandal.

Fethard will certainly hope something can be done.

Michael Heverin

Editor