Latest: Government urged to begin public-sector pay talks ‘immediately’

Latest: The calls come after a new government report says it will cost €200million to address pay inequality for new entrants to the public sector.

Latest: Government urged to begin public-sector pay talks ‘immediately’

Update 8.47pm: The Government is being urged to get on with restoring pay equality for new public servants.

A report from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform today says it will cost €200million to close the gap between the 60,000 people who entered the public service since 2011 and their longer-serving colleagues.

The new recruits have been earning less and are on lower terms and conditions because of cuts during the recession.

The Government has agreed to enter talks with all parties to address the issue.

Joanne Irwin, President of the TUI (Teachers' Union of Ireland), says there can't be any delay getting round the table.

“We welcome that there’s to be talks with the unions to negotiate towards pay equality, but we’re saying those talks need to commence immediately,” said Ms Irwin.

“They have all the figures now, they know the costings, we know the problem, therefore the talks should both commence and conclude immediately.”

Original story (6.18pm): €200million cost to address public-sector pay inequality, says government report

A new government report says it will cost €200million to address pay inequality for new entrants to the public sector.

The two-tier pay scale system was introduced as an emergency measure following the financial crash.

Unions have long warned that it has led to recruitment and retention difficulties in key sectors including education and nursing.

The government has now agreed to enter fresh talks with all parties in a bid to address the issue.

Pay cuts meant that from 2011 60,000 new recruits were earning 10% less than their longer-serving colleagues and had reduced allowances.

The Association of Secondary Teachers (ASTI) say new entrants to the teaching profession have been getting paid €4,000 less than a 2010 entrant with the same qualifications and experience.

ASTI say it's essential talks on pay equalisation begin immediately.

Reacting to the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform report, Fianna Fáil say the government needs to set out how exactly it intends to restore pay equality for new teachers.

“The Government has consistently cited that they were awaiting the publication of this report before making any substantive comments on the issue of pay equality for new teachers,” said Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Education Thomas Byrne.

“This report has now been published, it’s time for the Government to set out how and when it is going to respond to it and to outline and confirm how the entry lower entry pay anomaly is going to be corrected.”

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