Public servants set for several pay increases under new union deal

ireland
Staff will receive a one per cent pay increase in October 2021, with a potential further rise in February 2022. Photo: Getty Images.
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By Digital Desk Staff

Public service staff are set to receive several pay increases under a proposed deal negotiated with trade unions.

The Irish Times reports staff will receive a one per cent pay increase in October 2021, with the equivalent of a further one per cent award in February 2022.

However, this second award will be based on sectoral bargaining rather than an across-the-board increase.

The proposed agreement will also see a further one per cent rise for all 340,000 State employees in October 2022.

Public service management and trade unions representing State employees agreed proposals for the new two-year deal in the early hours of Friday morning.

If ratified, the deal will run from January 1st, 2021 until December 31st, 2022.

Lower-income

Unions said the proposed agreement was substantially weighted towards lower-income civil and public servants.

They said they had achieved solid progress on the three priorities set by the Public Service Committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (Ictu).

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These include a mechanism to address issues outstanding from the Haddington Road agreement, a separate mechanism to address sectoral issue and a realistic and acceptable approach to pay.

Issues such as additional unpaid working hours for staff — originally introduced under the Haddington Road agreement in 2013 — will be examined as part of a new review to be established in March.

A €150 million fund will be established to deal with issues arising from this review.

A new mechanism will also be introduced to deal with lower pay for teachers recruited in recent years.

On approach to pay, the proposals see a general round increase worth one per cent of gross pay or €500 a year, whichever is greater, on October 1st, 2021.

This would mean those on lower incomes will receive a significantly larger percentage increase than higher paid staff, unions said.

There would be a second general round increase worth the same amount on October 1st, 2022.

The proposed agreement also contains a provision for “the equivalent of a per cent increase in annualised basic salaries which would be paid out through a new sectoral bargaining fund in February 2022.”

This agreement builds on recent momentum to improve our public services

Speaking after the meeting of the Public Service Committee of Ictu, chairman Kevin Callinan said the proposals were the best outcome that could be achieved.

“This agreement builds on recent momentum to improve our public services and the lives of those who depend on and deliver them. The pay terms represent a realistic and acceptable approach to incomes, and they are substantially skewed towards lower earners in a very challenging context of limited resources,” he said.

“The Ictu team has also achieved a process to address sectoral issues, and a separate mechanism that will make real and substantial progress on the issues outstanding from the Haddington Road agreement, including its introduction of longer working hours that fell most heavily on women workers.”

The Public Service Committee represents all Ictu-affiliated unions with members working in the civil and public service. Its officers and lead negotiators include representatives from Fórsa, Siptu, INMO and INTO.

The committee will meet next week to consider the detail of the proposals and consult union members on the package.

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