SIPTU has condemned as unacceptable the placing on protective notice of the entire workforce at Tara Mines in Navan, Co. Meath. The 670 workers were placed on protective notice on Thursday, 3rd January, by the management of Boliden, the Swedish multinational company that owns Tara Mines. SIPTU Organiser, John O'Regan, said Boliden is singling out workers in Ireland in an attempt to drive down wages and working conditions. “Tara Mines is the only location within the Boliden Group which is being targeted," he said. “All its other companies, that are abroad, are not being treated in the same way. It's opportunism by the company, it's just taking the vulnerability of workers in Ireland a step too far.” Regan added: “The Tara Mines’ workers signed a two year agreement with management in July 2012, which the company is now seeking to tear up. “Even though the company is profitable, management is seeking reductions in workers’ pay, bonuses, overtime premiums, and lower rates of pay for new employees.” An intial Labour Relations Commission confenrce to hear the company’s claim for disregarding the current agreement is schuelded for Wednesday, 9th January. A section meeting of Tara Mines worker representatives will be held to discuss the company’s actions on Tuesday 15th January. A general meeting of all 400 SIPTU members at Tara Mines will be held on Thursday 17th January Pre-tax profits for the firm that operates Tara Mines were €28 million in the 12 months until December last year.