Wednesday 22 November 2017

Public servants on under €100k will have pay cuts reversed in three years

Anne-Marie Walsh Industry Correspondent

PUBLIC servants earning less than €100,000-a-year who face a pay cut under the new Croke Park deal will have their wages restored in three years.

But those earning over €100,000 face a permanent reduction in their salaries.

A new Department of Public Expenditure and Reform document outlines how the pay cuts will hit "high earners".

Those earning between €65,000 and €100,000 will take the pay cut of over 5.5pc for three years. But they will eventually get back on their current salary scale when the deal runs out.

In contrast, those earning over €100,000 – including assistant secretary generals in government departments – will not see their pay restored, because their pay increments will be permanently reduced by the pay cut. The pay cut ranges from 5.5pc on the first €80,000 of earnings, to 10pc on amounts over €185,000.

As well as pay cuts for higher earners, the new deal will mean reductions in overtime and premium pay, and an increase in working hours, if ratified by state employees.

Meanwhile, four unions opposing the deal said it is not acceptable that other unions should be voting on pay cuts for their staff.

"This would be an unprecedented development in Irish trade union history and one that no union member should accept," said the unions.

They are the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation, the Irish Medical Organisation, the Civil, Public and Services Union, and UNITE.

They claimed the proposals to extend the Croke Park deal will unfairly penalise women and workers on low incomes.

Protest

The unions said the deal also means there can be involuntary redundancies for the first time in a national agreement, due to "draconian" new redeployment measures.

However, the largest public sector union, IMPACT, insisted that compulsory redundancies are not in the deal.

The four unions, who are calling for a 'no' vote on the deal, expect up to 1,000 people to attend a meeting in protest at the proposals in Cork City Hall tomorrow. The meeting is the first in a nationwide campaign against the proposals.

Meanwhile, the Civil, Public and Services Union will begin balloting on the deal today.

The union yesterday overwhelmingly endorsed its negotiators' decision to walk out of the Croke Park talks last month.

SIPTU meets tomorrow to decide whether it will recommend the deal to members, after IMPACT and the Public Service Executive Union (PSEU) recommended a 'yes' vote.

The result of the ballot of all 19 public service unions on the proposed agreement will be revealed on Wednesday, April 17.

If accepted, the Government plans to roll out the payroll cuts from July 1.

Irish Independent

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