Mandate sends condolences on passing of former President, Doreen O’Keeffe

Monday 21 August 2023

Mandate Trade Union wishes to express its sincere condolences to the family and friends of former President, Doreen O’Keeffe who sadly passed away on Friday, 18th August 2023.

Doreen was a proud trade union member and activist working for Marks & Spencer on Mary Street in Dublin. She was elected President of the Irish Distributive and Administrative Union (IDATU) in 1992 at the Annual Delegate Conference held in Malahide. She became the first woman elected President of the Union in 70 years, following Cissy Cahalan who was President from 1922 to 1924.

Doreen played a formative role as part of the negotiating committee for the Irish Distributive and Administrative Union (IDATU) when it merged with the Irish National Union of Vintners’, Grocers’ and Allied Trades Assistants (INUVGATA) to create Mandate in 1994.

Doreen O’Keeffe made an invaluable contribution to the lives of retail workers throughout Ireland as an activist within the trade union movement and she will be missed by all who knew her.

In her address to members in December 1993 just before the merger of IDATU and INUVGATA was completed, Doreen said:

“The worldwide economic recession has brought lower living standards, less job security and increasing casualisation in employment. There are no shortages of employers who will cynically exploit these conditions for a quick buck.

“But together we have coped as well as any and protected our members in a very hostile environment. We will work with good employers to maintain and increase permanent jobs with better pay and conditions, while campaigning to get the government to provide minimum legal standards for everyone in employment.

“Our union is here to improve and defend the living standards of all members. We are here to help you and united we shall move forward with confidence.”

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

Details of Doreen O’Keeffes funeral arrangements available here.