An emergency inter-departmental taskforce will meet tomorrow (5/11) to examine issues identified in the Guardian newspaper regarding treatment of workers on board Irish fishing trawlers.

Comprising representatives from the departments of Justice; Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation; Transport, Tourism and Sport; Agriculture, Food and the Marine as well as the Attorney General’s Office, relevant agencies and An Garda Síochána, the taskforce will be chaired by marine minister, Simon Coveney.

In a statement Minister Coveney said he was ‘very concerned’ over the allegations in Monday’s Guardian newspaper, ‘particularly with regard to the safety of the workers concerned’.

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Cooperation pledged by Simon Coveney, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine to allegations of mistreatment of migrant fishermen

The article, described as ‘exclusive’, says ‘sleep deprivation, inhuman hours and low pay’ is revealed in an investigation of undocumented migrants working on prawn and whitefish trawlers operation from Ireland.

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and its agences ‘will of course co-operate in any way with this inter-agency project. Any evidence substantiating the allegations made today should be directed immediately to An Garda Síochána for further investigation’.