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Editorial: Only talking will save our services

The public service unions' work-to-rule in protest at the Government's pay cuts introduced in the Budget started today.

The action by 300,000 workers threatens to affect many public services, including the civil service, health, education and local authorities.

Labour Relations Commission chief executive Kieran Mulvey has already said the LRC will step in to try to stop employers and unions from "punching each other to death".

Many ordinary public service workers have lost hundreds of euro thanks to the Government pay cuts and fear more may be on the way.

But the very last thing our recovering economy needs is both sides sniping at each other from the trenches, with a go-slow being met by petty inconveniences such as refusing to facilitate the collection of union subscriptions at source.

Only serious talking will resolve the issues and that must start without delay.