Trump visit highlights pay disparity between soldiers and gardaí

The disparity in pay and conditions between An Garda Síochána and the Defence Forces involved in protecting visiting VIPs was again highlighted yesterday.

Trump visit highlights pay disparity between soldiers and gardaí

The disparity in pay and conditions between An Garda Síochána and the Defence Forces involved in protecting visiting VIPs was again highlighted yesterday.

Personnel from the army, naval service, and air corps are involved in protection duties for the visit and are being paid what is known as the Aid To Civil Power (ATCP) allowance.

On average, they receive about €20 after tax for a 24-hour shift.

But gardaí posted to Shannon Airport and Doonbeg for upwards of a week can expect to reportedly receive 50 times that amount — between €1,000 and €1,500.

PDForra, the association which represents enlisted personnel in the Defence Forces, has said it is “unacceptable” its members should be provided with such “archaic rates”.

“The gardaí will make money out of it and the best of luck to them. But our members deserve far more,” said PDForra general secretary Ger Guinan.

He added that gardaí were very sympathetic to the plight of the soldiers.

Furthermore, while gardaí are being given suitable overnight accommodation, Defence Forces members are using sleeping bags at the terminal in Shannon Airport and are also sleeping in tents around Doonbeg.

During the visit by Pope Francis last August, soldiers were also forced to sleep in tents in the Phoenix Park.

Those on duty in Knock village last summer claimed they were served up food which would not be acceptable in prisons.

“PDForra highlighted the issue of pay and conditions for the Pope’s visit as well,” said Mr Guinan.

“We have also highlighted these issues to the Public Service Pay Commission [PSPC].”

The PSPC has already furnished its recommendations on the Defence Forces to the Government.

Ten days ago, PDForra and Raco, which represents officers, were summoned to a meeting with Department of Defence officials to discuss the report’s recommendations.

“That invitation to attend was rescinded about half an hour later,” said Mr Guinan.

“We were then told the Government needed more time to review the recommendations.

"We have had contact with the Department of Defence since and they are saying this meeting will now be held in the next couple of weeks.”

He said his members were “extremely frustrated by the delay and also by the proposed [low] increases published in the media” following a number of leaks about the recommendations.

More in this section

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.