‘New pay deal likely to be spread over three years’

A new pay deal is likely to be spread over three years because fiscal constraints means it will take longer to restore the cuts imposed on public sector workers under the Government’s emergency financial measures.

That is according to Impact in its daily blog to members, which also advises no offer has yet been made in the talks tasked with devising a successor to the Lansdowne Road Agreement.

Recruitment and retention issues were among those on the agenda yesterday “against a backdrop of some openly seeking special deals (ie more money),” Impact said. “We counted at least 20 grades or professions where unions said there were pressing recruitment and/or retention issues, including certain Impact grades in health, local government and the civil service. If they all got up-front money as a solution, we’d soon be in fiscal outer-space — with nothing left for the bulk of public servants seeking pay recovery.”

Impact pointed out that the Public Service Pay Commission said the talks might establish a process for assessing the merits “of the many claims in this area”.

“That is certainly worth exploring further, while keeping the focus on the shared union priorities of unwinding FEMPI as quickly as possible and protecting the value of our pensions,” it said.

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