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Jobs under threat as IMPACT and Aer Lingus clash

THE creation of 40 new Aer Lingus jobs at Shannon to service the airline’s transatlantic services in the New Year is under threat this week. This is due to disagreement between the airline and trade union IMPACT, which represents cabin crew staff, over the staffing of the flights and as a result Aer Lingus has said it will be outsourcing the work. They have also warned that some of the existing cabin crew jobs may be jeopardised. The trade union claims that the airline has failed to negotiate with them in a meaningful way, and they are balloting their members for industrial action. IMPACT also claims that Aer Lingus are using scare tactics to try and get what they want, and it is imperative that their members don’t give in to them. In a letter to staff, Aer Lingus chief executive Christoph Mueller put the blame firmly on IMPACT. “I wish to update you on an important and very regrettable …

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Drop in number signing on in Clare

THERE was a substantial reduction in the number of people signing on in Clare during September. There were just shy of 9,000 people (8,983) on the live register in Clare during September, compared to 9,613 in August. The drop of 630 equates to a reduction of 6.5%. Most of the people on the live register in Clare are attached to the Social Welfare Office in Ennis and unsurprisingly that’s where most of the reduction was concentrated. While there were 5,535 signing on in Ennis in August, this was down to 5,094 in September, a drop of 441. This was the biggest drop at any of the four Social Welfare Offices in Clare, while the figures also improved at the other three. In Ennistymon it went from 1,369 in August to 1,318 last month. At Kilrush it dropped from 1,310 to 1,279 and in Tulla from 1,399 to 1,292. The number of under 25s signing on in Clare dropped by 154, …

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Shannon Xtra Vision store staying open despite closing down sale

ALTHOUGH it had a closing down sale lately, Xtra Vision at SkyCourt is not in fact closing. SkyCourt manager Pat Kelly said, “This is a welcome boost for SkyCourt. It would have been a devastating blow to lose Xtra-vision as an anchor tenant. We knew that the Shannon store has always traded well and that’s why the landlord worked closely with the new owners throughout the receivership process to convince them of this fact. “We are delighted that our efforts have been fruitful and look forward to seeing a new vibrancy and exciting developments at the Shannon store, which is now undergoing a refit to recommence trading.” He also said that Senator Tony Mulcahy had campaigned strongly to keep the store open. Welcoming the news, Senator Mulcahy said; “The decision by Xtra-vision to remain at Shannon demonstrates the value of shopping local. Even during the scale-down period, Shannon consumers stuck with a local outlet as opposed to going elsewhere. All …

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325 hospital procedures cancelled

Up to 325 procedures covering surgery, out patient appointments and clinics in six acute  Mid-West hospitals were cancelled on Tuesday as a result of the junior doctors’ strike. The HSE has confirmed the cancellations affecting Clare patients were in the University  Hospital Limerick, University Maternity Hospital, Ennis Hospital, Croom Hospital, Nenagh Hospital. According to the Irish Medical Organisation (IMO), Sunday cover plus an Intensive Care Unit ((ICU) registrar will be provided at University Hospital Limerick, Ennis Hospital and Nenagh Hospital on Tuesday. “It is up to the hospital to make the necessary arrangements with regard to any cancellations they feel are necessary. “Chemotherapy services and dialysis will be protected. If further cover is needed over and above Sunday cover to ensure this then that will be provided,” said an IMO spokeswoman. The Mid-West HSE has stated any patient whose operation, clinic appointment or service is affected is being contacted directly by phone. Any patient who doesn’t directly  hear from the …

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Shannon rat problem disputed

DEBATE and disagreement broke out over the scale of the rat problem in Shannon at Tuesday’s town council meeting. There have been numerous complaints about the amount of rats going around the town in recent weeks but at Tuesday’s meeting, there were suggestions that the problem isn’t as bad as has been claimed, something some of the members angrily refuted. At the meeting, Councillor Sean McLoughlin put forward a motion asking that County Council carry out rat baiting on a regular basis in Shannon and for the council to clean out any place where rats might nest. Councillor Cathy McCafferty had another motion requesting that members be informed of what arrangements the council had entered into with regard to pest/rodent control since the last local elections in 2009. The written response to Councillor McLoughlin’s motion from senior executive engineer Eugene O’Shea said Shannon isn’t worse than any other county. “While it is impossible to inspect all possible locations where rodents …

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Baby Shane in dramatic debut

SHANE O’Donnell wrote himself into the history books on Saturday and a child born early on Monday morning, in the most dramatic of circumstances, will bear his first name. Shannon’s Laura Hinsley gave birth to her fourth child and first son at the side of the road close to the Clare-Limerick border, after a dash to the hospital didn’t quite succeed. Describing the morning, she said, “My husband was doing 160km going in the road but I knew once we hit Bunratty that it was coming. He had to pull over across from the Two Mile Inn. We went from flying down the road to pulling in and the baby was just there! He delivered the baby, made sure it was crying and put his hoody around it and drove on again to the hospital; it had happened in a matter of seconds. I’d say we were only stopped for about a minute and a half, it was that fast. …

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Literary gathering to celebrate women writers

UP to 150 people are expected in Coole Park and Gort this weekend for the 19th annual Lady Gregory Autumn Gathering. This year, the gathering centres on women writers and includes readings and workshops by a number of well-known writers and academics. “By inviting famous women writers of Irish descent from around the world to follow in the footsteps of this remarkable woman, we are honouring Lady Gregory’s contribution to Irish arts and culture in this unique gathering. We seem to be attracting a wider international audience, both male and female, with this enhanced Gathering. “Spread over five days instead of three, from Thursday to Monday, more overseas visitors will be attracted to South Galway and to Ireland, in support of the Gathering Ireland 2013 initiative,” explained honorary secretary of the event, Marion Cox. Last year’s events as part of the Gathering were booked out and Marion is expecting a large crowd again this year. “The feedback has been absolutely …

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Alert tone on smartphones

Gardaí in Ennis are warning people to take care when buying smartphones in cash from sellers they find online. According to Superintendent Derek Smart, there have been up to five incidents in as many weeks of people in the wider Ennis area arranging to meet sellers in public places, giving them money in exchange for the smartphone, only to later discover it doesn’t work. “We have had a number of incidents where people are buying iPhones on DoneDeal.ie and other websites, going to meet the sellers, looking at the phone which appears as it should, paying their money and only finding out when they go home that it is a dud phone,” he said. “We are concerned that other people may have been victims of this scam but may not have come forward to gardaí for various reasons. We are asking people who have been victims of this sort of crime to come forward and report it to gardaí,” he …

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