Wednesday 7 December 2016

It is time for a fair deal for all

Published 03/04/2016 | 02:30

'The manner of the public dispute between Kieran Mulvey of the Work Relations Commission and Jack O'Connor (pictured), the leader of the country's largest trade union, Siptu, does not augur well for a process that is now required to bring these matters to a successful resolution. Photo: Brian McDaid
'The manner of the public dispute between Kieran Mulvey of the Work Relations Commission and Jack O'Connor (pictured), the leader of the country's largest trade union, Siptu, does not augur well for a process that is now required to bring these matters to a successful resolution. Photo: Brian McDaid

In the recent election, Fine Gael made a virtue of "more and better jobs" and "making work pay", two issues which go to the heart of the many problems which are besetting the country at the moment - specifically the growing number of industrial relations disputes and more pressing concerns in relation to housing, homelessness and escalating rent costs.

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All of these issues are intertwined and the resolution of one without the other would be to tackle such problems in a piecemeal fashion, when an overarching and more holistic approach is required by the next government.

While the social partnership model of old had taken on a life of its own, over and above its initial remit, and in itself became part of the problem, the template of social partnership still has much to be recommended in terms of tackling these issues.

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