Unite in U-turn as 82pc back new pay deal
THE Unite trade union has become the latest workers' group to back the Haddington Road public service agreement on pay and reform.
In a sharp U-turn, the union's 6,500 public service members followed their union leadership's advice and backed the deal by 82pc to 18pc.
Earlier this year the members rejected the original Croke Park II agreement by more than 60pc and followed that up with a similar rejection of the revised Haddington Road agreement last month.
But as most of the other public service unions had accepted it, Unite feared that its relatively small number of public service members, who are scattered throughout the public service, would be isolated and have far harsher pay cuts imposed on them through legislation.
Public Expenditure Minister Brendan Howlin introduced legislation last month which provides for immediate pay cuts, including a freeze on all increments for three years.
However, in a carrot-and-stick approach, unions that sign up to Haddington Road will be exempt from the legislation.
In a further boost for Mr Howlin, the association representing about 2,000 army officers – Raco – also backed the deal by a resounding 93pc.