The Dáil has passed the legislation that paves the way for the introduction of pay cuts in the public sector.
The Government's proposal was succesful by 80 votes to 69.
Finance Minister Brian Lenihan announced in last week's Budget that cuts of between 5% and 15% were required to reduce the public pay bill by €1bn.
Meanwhile, ICTU general secretary David Begg suggested today that the era of social partnership was "at an end".
He said Budget 2010 had been a watershed in the way the country's unions engaged with the Government.