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Archbishop Cushley calls for ‘fair outcomes’ for Grangemouth workers

Dan McGinty - Scottish Catholic Observer - Fri, Oct 25th 2013

Archbishop Leo Cushley of St Andrews and Edinburgh has called for those ‘in a position of power and influence’ to work towards ‘fair outcomes’ for all those involved with the closure risk Ineos oil refinery as he led prayers for those affected by the crisis.


“I would ask the people and clergy of the archdiocese to pray and support those affected by this crisis and those in a position to influence positively a path that will lead to fair outcomes and long term employment for the families and communities that are already struggling in the current economic climate,” Archbishop Cushley (below) said.


The Grangemouth plant, which is in the St Mungo’s and St Ninian’s Deanery of the archdiocese, has been rocked by an industrial dispute between the plant owners and the union Unite. The situation looked bleak yesterday with the announcement that owners Ineos had decided to shut down the petrochemical side of the complex with the loss of all 800 jobs. However, talks are still being held to determine the future of the refinery there are hopes that a solution may yet be found to the problem. Union leaders this afternoon voiced optimism after meeting management to discuss a ‘survival’ plan the plant.


The archbishop has also sent a statement to all parishes, to be read at Sunday Mass this weekend. In it he draws attention to the recent comments by Pope Francis that outline the importance of work for individuals and communities and the responsibility of those in public office to encourage growth in opportunities for fair and equitable employment.


“Work is fundamental to the dignity of a person. Work, to use a metaphor, ‘anoints’ us with dignity, it gives one the ability to maintain oneself, one’s family, to contribute to the growth of one¹s own nation,” Pope Francis said earlier this year.


“I am thinking of how many, and not only young people, are unemployed, often due to a purely economic conception of society, which seeks profit selfishly, beyond the parameters of social justice.


“I wish to extend an invitation to solidarity to everyone, and I would like to encourage those in public office to make every effort to give new impetus to employment, this means caring for the dignity of the person, but above all I would say do not lose hope.”

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