Strikes: Public unions to respond collectively to garda deal

Public service unions plan to act collectively in response to the deal recommended by the Labour Court that averted yesterday’s garda strike.

The deal, which recommended a restoration and increase of rent allowance as well as payment for 15 minutes of shift handover time, stopped members of the Garda Representative Association (GRA) and the Association of Garda Sergeants & Inspectors (AGSI) from holding a strike.

Various other unions spoke out yesterday saying their members were in similar situations and would seek to have their issues resolved.

“The reality is my members deliver 100-odd hours extra a year to the State unpaid,” said Eoin Ronayne, general secretary of the Civil and Public Services Union (CPSU).

“That’s €2,000 on the average salary, so they will be saying if the gardaí work 15 minutes before the start of a shift and they’re now going to get paid for that, we work 30 minutes at the end of a shift and we don’t get paid for it.”

Liam Doran, general secretary of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO), said his members were also in similar situations to gardaí and, therefore, would be seeking immediate redress.

“A number of the initiatives brought forward by the court (on Thursday) have direct relevance to address the crisis with recruitment and retention facing nurses. We have rosters as well.”

The INMO executive committee will meet on Monday and Tuesday next to consider their options.

Meanwhile, the Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association (IFESA) also has grounds to compare their members against gardaí. They just had their rent allowance restored, however, unlike the Labour Court recommendation for gardaí, it was not increased.

“We are looking at the implications of the proposed deal with gardaí and considering our options,” a spokesperson said.

Bernard Harbor, on behalf of Impact, said they hoped to move collectively on behalf of all public servants.

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