Date Released: 05 June 2015
The National Executive Council of SIPTU met today (Friday, 5th June) to consider the proposals for an agreement on pay in the public service. Having considered the details it was decided to recommend them for acceptance by the union’s membership.
It was concluded that they represent reasonable progress towards the objective of recovering pay lost following the economic collapse of 2008. The union’s target of reducing the effect of the pension levy has also been addressed. The pay improvements would apply from a date six months earlier than that envisaged in the Haddington Road Agreement. These together with the significant measures, outlined in the proposal, to strengthen the protections against outsourcing would be important steps towards rebuilding decent standards of employment in the public service.
The proposal is structured in a manner that is consistent with the commitment in the Croke Park and Haddington Road Agreements which emphasises the position of the lower paid. Meanwhile, the reinstatement of lost pay for those on salaries in excess of €65,000 per annum is also reiterated.
Progress has also been made otherwise on the non-pay agenda. In this regard other commitments such as those relating to regularising the position of low paid interns in the Health Service are also welcome. Provisions envisaging engagement on anomalies affecting particular categories and groups such as General Operatives and related grades in the Dublin Local Authority area offer a way forward after a long impasse.
It may well be that State revenue returns for this year could exceed expectations. Equally, we cannot predict the rate of inflation over the later half of the tenure of the proposed agreement. However, it would be unwise to reject this proposal as the prospect of any additional benefit from re-negotiation would be outweighed by the danger of forfeiture of some of the key elements envisaged in it. In any event if the proposal is accepted it is expected that negotiations on a successor would take place during 2017.
Accordingly all things being considered the National Executive Council of the union recommends acceptance in a secret ballot vote to be completed by Thursday, 23rd July, following a period of extensive membership consultation and information.
SIPTU National Executive Council
To read the full text of the 'Lansdowne Road Agreement' Lansdowne Road Agreement