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RTÉ Director-General says staff not briefed due to Gay Byrne’s passing

RTÉ’s Director-General, Dee Forbes says staff were not briefed on its proposals to close its Limerick studio and cut 200 jobs nationwide due to the sad passing of their colleague, Gay Byrne.

It was announced on Wednesday evening that RTÉ plans to close its Lyric FM studio located at Robert Street in an effort to save up to €60 million.

The closure comes alongside a proposal to cut up to 200 jobs as well as its digital radio stations and to introduce a 15% pay reduction for its highest-earning presenters. 

There has been widespread criticism following the announcement with many raising the issue that staff were not briefed.

According to local councillor, Elisa O’Donovan, “staff have not been included in this [decision] and have only been fed information through the media. It was a huge shock to staff in Limerick”.

However, Director-General at RTÉ, Dee Forbes says “our intention was to brief staff in full this week.

“However, given the sad passing of our colleague Gay Byrne, a decision was taken to postpone until next week. 

“With so much detail now in the public domain, our first priority was to contact all staff immediately with an update on the revised strategy, and plans.”

In a statement to Limerick Voice, RTÉ says the early announcement came “following a leak to the Irish Times” and “consultations will begin shortly with all staff affected by the changes”.

RTÉ has also told Limerick Voice that it “will continue to provide a mid-west news service in Limerick, however we cannot comment on the location at this time.”

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