Siptu today said it has learned that Irish Ferries was seeking to recruit seafarers in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to replace Irish Ferries workers- nearly two weeks before the results of the review carried out by independent consultants Greg Sparks and Martin King was even published.

Branch Organiser, Paul Smyth said the Union has evidence that Irish Ferries were using Dobson's Recruitment Agency to recruit Eastern Europeans to replace Irish workers in Irish Ferries. 

Mr Smyth said: 'this is just another example of a bad faith on the part of the Irish Ferries management and clearly demonstrates that the sole purpose in engaging independent assessors to comprehensively review the company was simply to avoid any possible industrial unrest over the summer months'.

He added that SIPTU are calling on the Government to signal its intention to enact legislation which would ensure ferry workers, who regularly operate between the UK and Ireland or France and Ireland, have the same protection as all shore-based employees.  

Irish Ferries received the consultants' report on September 15th. It was commissioned in July as part of the Labour Court process to resolve the dispute of the company replacing Irish workers with cheaper foreign workers.