13 September 2008

Still no positive Results at National Pay Talks

The General Secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) has said he is less confident now that a new national pay deal can be agreed.

Arriving for further talks at Government Buildings in Dublin today, David Begg claimed that employers had been "unhelpful in portraying the trade union movement as a problem for competitiveness in the economy".
He added that "highly negative comments" seemed to fly in the face of everything the social partners were about.

Unions and employers have indicated there is still a significant gap between the two sides, as talks on a new national pay deal resumed once more this afternoon. (for more on this subject see my entries of May 14th & 15th, June 26th & 30th, July 6th, August 5th and September 8th & 12th)

Brendan McGinty of the employers' group IBEC said it was "only fair" to recognise that there is a "substantial gap" between the parties involved in this weekend's talks.

Shay Coady of the IMPACT trade union declared that his union believed a deal was possible this weekend. The country needed an agreement, and there was a requirement on all of the parties - ICTU, the government and IBEC - to do "whatever they can" to craft an agreement.

Today's discussions are expected to continue into the night. (If it were a football match, they would be in extra time by now...)

Taoiseach Brian Cowen had set a deadline of this weekend to try to reach a deal.

Increases agreed in a national wage deal apply to over 600,000 trade union members and set an unofficial pay benchmark for many more.
Employers and unions are also at odds on collective bargaining rights for unions, pensions, public service modernisation and agency workers.

As yet it is unclear whether the government will come up with any commitments that could bridge the gap between the two sides.

The Emerad Islander

No comments:

Post a Comment