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‘Treatment of staff is disgraceful’ says TD as all Irish branches of brand close

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THE Body Shop has closed all seven branches of their stores in Ireland after “years of unprofitability”.

Several staff across five stores in the Republic are still owed thousands of euro worth of wages after the company closed up shop.

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The Body Shop closed all seven Irish storesCredit: � 2024 PA Media, All Rights Reserved
Sinn Fein TD Louise O'Reilly has slammed the treatment of employees

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Sinn Fein TD Louise O’Reilly has slammed the treatment of employeesCredit: Free for editorial use

And Sinn Féin spokesperson on enterprise, trade, and employment, Louise O’Reilly TD has called on The Body Shop to adhere to employment law.

Branding the treatment of staff as “nothing short of disgraceful,” O’Reilly urged the brand to pay staff any money owed, and honour the 30-day statutory consultation period before implementing redundancies.

She said the treatment of employees “looks like a possible flouting of Irish employment law” and said the decision to close Irish operations last week has “cast staff into a financial and employment limbo”.

The TD added: “The decision by the company to close its Irish operations last week has cast staff into a financial and employment limbo.

“Workers are owed several weeks wages and holiday pay, yet the company has stated they will not be paid.

“Nor has the company adhered to the 30-day notice period for collective redundancies.

“The failure to pay workers monies owed, and the failure to honour the 30-day statutory consultation period before the implementation of the redundancies, is what looks like a possible flouting of Irish employment law.”

O’Reilly urged government intervention and said the workers should be prioritised in this situation.

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She said: “This is an unacceptable situation and requires immediate intervention by the Minister for Enterprise, Trade, and Employment.

‘This is so sad’ say shocked customers as popular Irish shop set to close in 10 days

“The workers in the Body Shop must be the priority here and it is imperative that the government stands up for them.

“I offer my and Sinn Féin’s solidarity and support to the workers at what is a very difficult time.”

Staff were informed via email weeks ago that the stores were closing from the 29 February, but were told on February 28 that they won’t be paid for the last two weeks of work. 

The employees were also informed via Zoom call on that day that they will not be paid for holidays owed or for any owed redundancy. 

It is understood that 39 staff across five stores in the Republic of Ireland are owed thousands of euro worth of wages. 

The manager of the Cork-based store, who marked an end to her five years as manager last week, posted an emotional farewell online on February 28 and declared: “It’s a sad day for us all.” 

She added: “This morning we found out with certainty that we will not be paid for the last two weeks.

“We must now go to the Government with our hands out, because of the way this has been done we are unable to undertake [other] employment for 30 days unless the Minister waives it for us.” 

In January, The Body Shop was sold to a “family office” company named Alma24 after “years of unprofitability”.

The cosmetics company said physical stores “remain a part of future strategy” but there is “renewed focus” on online shopping and wholesales.

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