Lack of imagination will lead to strike action
Labour employment affairs spokesperson, Marie Sherlock has today (Tuesday, 19th July) warned that the lack of imagination shown by the Government to deal with public sector pay will lead to strike action this autumn.
Senator Sherlock said:
“It’s over a month since the breakdown of negotiations between unions and public sector employers. Workers are frustrated, they feel disrespected and who can blame them. The Government side must show some real imagination and urgency now or they are risking major strike action in the autumn.
“The reality is a huge amount of workers in the public service are in low and middle income jobs and they are struggling to put food on the table and like so many people across Ireland are not able to cope with the dramatic increases in the cost of living. Government must get a grip on that.
“We know 61% of all health workers earn below €41,600 per year and 54% of all health workers with thousands in clerical and local authority roles earning wages which provide no spare capacity to deal with spiraling food, energy and fuel prices.
“Labour has been arguing that Ireland needs a pay rise for months. With runaway inflation and fresh concerns of winter energy blackouts, workers in the public service, like workers in the private sector, cannot wait any longer. They need certainty now.
“The government has shown in the very recent past that pay increases are possible when there’s political will. The Government must show the same political will now, kick start public service pay talks and commit to pay increases for low and middle paid public sector workers.”