Ireland -Overtime row shakes Croke Park Agreement -June 27, 2012

Just when the second-year evaluation of the Croke Park agreement (see the Collective Bargaining Newsletters of the first half of 2012) reported public sector reform is on track, an overtime conflict between the Ministry of Health and the trade unions sparked new debate over its interpretation. The 2010 agreement, reached after large IMF imposed salary and benefit cuts, secured no further pay cuts or forced lay-offs in the public sector in exchange for a massive reform that would have to save up to 3.3 billion euro annually. However, as health expenditure exceeded this year’s budget by 145 million in the first quarter, the Health Service Executive (HSE) suggested reducing costs by cutting back on overtime, allowances and premium pay. Trade unions reacted outraged, arguing that allowances and overtime form a pivotal part of pay and are therefore protected by the agreement. Tensions within the government have arisen as some ministers defend and others dismiss the HSE plan. Unions warn that the combination of a further 9500 job cuts and a recruitment ceiling may put pressure on the quality of services in the upcoming two years and that they will fight any privatisation of public services to avoid increased public expenditure.

English: http://www.impact.ie/12/06/13/Croke-Park-agreement ...

http://www.siptu.ie/media/pressreleases2012/mainnews/fullstory,15990,en.html

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2012/0626/breaking3.html

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2012/0626/1224318727011.html

http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/unions-will-not-accept-privatised ...

http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/pay-cutbacks-as-hse-overspends ...

This article was published in the Collective Bargaining Newsletter. It aims to facilitate information exchange between trade unions and to support the work of ETUC's collective bargaining committee. For more information, please contact the editor Jan Cremers, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies (AIAS) cbn-aias@uva.nl or the communications officer at the ETUI, Mariya Nikolova mnikolova@etui.org. All rights reserved. The ETUI is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

For previous issues of the Collective bargaining newsletter, please visit http://www.etui.org/E-Newsletters/Collective-bargaining-newsletter. You may find further information on the ETUI at www.etui.org, and on the AIAS at www.uva-aias.net. © ETUI aisbl, Brussels 2012. To unsubscribe, please contact Mariya Nikolova.


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