Irish Rail workers on the picket line in Portlaoise refuse to speak to media or have picture taken

Michelle Hogan

Reporter:

Michelle Hogan

Irish Rail workers on the picket line in Portlaoise refuse picture, video and chance to share their message

An empty Portlaoise Train Station as industrial action takes place on Tuesday, November 7.

Irish Rail workers on the picket line at Portlaoise Train Station said that they did not want to speak to the Leinster Express on Tuesday, November 7.

They said that they did not want to speak to any media in case they were misquoted and that the union reps would speak on their behalf so that there was no miscommunication of their message. 

The group of five Irish Rail workers picketing also did not want their picture or video taken despite the protest taking place in public on the busy Mountmellick Road in Portlaoise where hundreds of people were passing them by.

They said that a picture paints a thousand words and while they personally did not mind their picture being taken, they refused in case the wrong message was portrayed.

The workers whose fingers were numb from standing out in the cold said that media should speak to the union reps for information on the strike. 

Other media outlets in Ireland have reported pictures and videos of workers on the picket line and a train driver, James Daly, spoke on Morning Ireland on RTE Radio One on Tuesday morning.

He claimed that Irish Rail staff were left with no other choice but to strike and that this is what they have to do to get people to listen. He said that it has been ten years since they got a pay rise and that all they wanted was fairness and transparency.

Irish Rail workers are striking at Portlaoise Train Station and two other Irish Rail depots in the town. 

This is the second date of planned industrial action by Irish Rail. 

AA Roadwatch has warned they are expecting a significant increase in traffic during the work stoppage.

Over 10,000 people commute to work from Laois everyday.

Other dates for planned industrial action include: Tuesday 7th November, Tuesday 14th November (includes Ireland v Denmark World Cup Play-off at Lansdowne Road), Thursday 23rd November, Friday 8th December.