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Quinn staff march in Cavan, Dublin

Quinn Insurance company staff have staged marches in Dublin and Cavan to highlight job fears among the 2,800 workers after the Financial Regulator’s decision to place the troubled company into provisional administration.

In Dublin, over 2,000 staff staged a protest outside the Department of Finance on Tuesday, calling for the regulator to overturn his decision to stop accepting new business in the UK.

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The protest began outside the Dáil and marchers walked to Government Buildings on Merrion Street. Letters were handed in to the department and the taoiseach’s office while protestors chanted “save our jobs.”

Some workers had traveled from Cavan and Fermanagh to take part in the protest as well as from Cardiff in Wales, where UK employees fear their work will run out in the next couple of months.

A spokeswoman for the Quinn Group warned it was incumbent on politicians, both in the North and Republic, to lobby for the workers to get the regulator’s decision overturned.

She warned of the “devastating long-term effect” for the border region and the country if the decision was not reversed.

A letter, written on behalf of UK-based Quinn Insurance employees and service providers, was sent to the regulator and the provisional administrators appealing to overturn what it says is an “unreasonable” action.

The taoiseach, Brian Cowen, has asked senior management at Enterprise Ireland to try to “bring matters forward.”

Speaking on Tuesday morning, Enterprise Ireland chief executive, Frank Ryan, said he met Quinn senior management on Easter Sunday in Dublin and that all key parties were “fully engaged in an effort to resolve this matter as quickly as possible.”