ONE of the former owners of Dublin’s Paris Bakery has described how the collapse of the business has destroyed his life.
Former staff are staging a sit-in at the premises and have vowed to stay there until they are paid what they claim is €130,000 in outstanding wages.
Meanwhile, the bakery’s former owner, Yannick Forel, has told the
“I don’t have the solution,” he said. “I’m sorry about that. I am an honest person and I always try to pay everybody.”
He said that his reputation had been destroyed and that the episode had taken a serious toll on his life.“My name is gone now, everyone thinks I’m the bad guy in Ireland.”
He said that he had lined up a deal to open a franchise of bakeries, but it had fallen through.
Mr Forel has previously said he intends to pay the workers and denied he is leaving them high-and-dry.
“It’s not my fault,” he insisted. “For six months I can’t sleep.”
The Paris Bakery closed last Tuesday after its lease expired in June. It had employed about 70 workers.
Despite a public campaign to save the popular eatery, the facility is to be demolished to make way for a shopping centre.
Anissa Hosany (28), who worked at the bakery for close to three years and is taking part in a sit-in protest at the premises, claims she is owed about €4,000 in back wages on top of outstanding holiday and redundancy pay.
“They’ve been saying for a very long time that they will pay in two weeks, they’ll pay in one week. And every time I’ll get maybe €500,” she said. “We are going to stay here until we get paid.”
Yesterday, former staff also staged a protest outside the home of Ruth Savill, one of the company’s previous directors.
Ms Savill told the
“Obviously I have sympathy for the workers and their situation. I resigned six months ago and I also stand to lose money,” she explained.
Meanwhile, Minister for Trade Joe Costello, who is a local TD, said that a loophole in the law that left the staff without wages needed to be closed.
Mandate trade union general secretary John Douglas has said he and other trade union activists plan to stay at the bakery “as long as it takes” for the workers to get paid.