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Face value?

The manager said that he had to fire me because the Dublin office had asked whether I had a work permit. He said they wondered why he had an American working there.

He told me of a Czech girl who had been working at another Heaton's shop; she got caught without a work permit and it cost the business €5000. That was feasible,* and I accepted his story at face value.

What foolishness, volunteering to be union shop steward when I'm not even working legally.

—Autumn 2002, Kilkenny

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* Feasible? It's unlikely that a company would have to pay a fine for employing somebody who had supplied a valid tax number. I had done so, and the implication of the manager's story was that this "Czech girl" had done so as well.

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