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RTÉ locked in pay talks with unions opposed to salary freeze

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Changes to be felt wide-spread: Kevin Duffy is chairing the talks

Changes to be felt wide-spread: Kevin Duffy is chairing the talks

Changes to be felt wide-spread: Kevin Duffy is chairing the talks

RTÉ is locked in talks with union representatives as it tries to thrash out the finer details of a salary restructuring plan in a bid to save €60m over three years.

Negotiations have been centred on the issue of salary increments.

RTÉ management says that given the company's current financial circumstances, it is not possible to pay them to staff members entitled to their annual increases.

However, the Trade Union Group (TUG) has said that non-payment of salary increments is "not acceptable" to its members.

It added that the current proposal being put forward is "inequitable".

Talks continued this week between RTÉ management and the TUG on counter-proposals put forward by the union, but both sides failed to reach a resolution.

A union source said that the talks, which are being chaired by former Labour Court chairman Kevin Duffy, will resume next week.

When asked how many staff members will be potentially affected by the resulting agreement, he said that the changes will be felt wide-spread.

RTÉ employs more than 1,800 staff, who have a number of different contracts and are on vastly differing pay scales linked to years of service.

"Any changes or cut that will be agreed will affect all the staff at some stage," he said.

A joint statement, released on behalf of both RTÉ and TUG, said that negotiations are continuing but that no agreement has yet been reached "on any aspect of these proposals".

It added that assessment forms, which are normally used to determine an employee's entitlement to a salary increment, have been completed as usual.

"This does not alter the company's State position or imply that increments will be paid. Nor does it imply an acceptance of that position by the TUG," it added.

The Government has agreed to plunge €50m into the company over the next five years.

Irish Independent