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Public sector can tell time but can't see reality staring them in the face

As our beleaguered, underpaid semi-state employees continue to fight against any reduction in their standard of living, some interesting figures have come to light.

According to the latest statistics from the CSO, the average weekly salary in the private sector has dropped by about 3pc since 2008, ie. just before the economic crash.

But in the public sector, the equivalent figures has actually gone up by nearly 2pc, meaning that while the average yearly salary for the privately employed is about €36k, for those on the public payroll, it is about €48k.

And the continuing refusal of semi-state employees to face economic reality - as shown by the those rail workers who went on strike over a 1.6pc pay reduction - was further in evidence this week by certain employees of An Post.


Some of its staff, members of the Public Service Executive Union, went all the way to the Labour Court to try and get themselves a 2pc pay rise - the reason being that An Post have introduced a new system of clocking in which, according to the union, would add a full 5-6 minutes to their members' working day.

This new system is an attempt by the company to increase productivity by better monitoring the working hours of its staff, a move which, with revenue dropping all the time, most would consider to be vital for its survival. But not the PSEU, who see it as another excuse to push up the already inflated wage bill.

In the private sector, such an attempt would be laughed at. In the public sector, however, it has to go through the hugely expensive process of winding its way to the Labour Court, before someone finally sees sense and, in not so many words, tells the union to get a grip.

And the rail workers wonder why there is so little public sympathy for them.