Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise Trade, Employment, and Workers’ Rights, Louise O’Reilly TD, called on the government to challenge the injunction taken against the Employment Regulation Order (ERO) for workers in the security sector before Christmas.
She was speaking after a meeting with some members of the Irish Security Industry Association, who also want the ERO implemented so workers can benefit from better pay and conditions.
Teachta O’Reilly said:
“For the second time in three years, the same group of employers have stopped workers in the security sector receiving a pay increase under an Employment Regulation Order (ERO).
“Workers who were due to receive a pay increase under the ERO on August 29th have not received this.
“This is a shocking situation when you consider these workers have not had a pay increase since 2019 despite working throughout the Covid crisis, and now facing a cost-of-living crisis.
“This ERO was meticulously and impartially agreed between employers and worker representatives before being ratified by the Labour Court.
“Indeed, the three employers who secured the court injunction fully participated in this process.
“It is high time that these companies stop this nonsense and comply with a system that aims to improve the basic rights for employees.
“The right to a basic rate of pay, the right to sick pay, and the right to payment should they get injured on the job.
“I was reminded today that these three companies are an outlier in the sector when I met with some members of the Irish Security Industry Association (ISIA), who are desperate to have the ERO implemented so workers can benefit from better pay and conditions.
“Indeed, in the meeting, Gill O’Riordan, Chair of the Guarding Division and Vice President of the ISIA, stated that the situation is now at ‘a critical juncture as it is imperative that this impasse is resolved before Christmas to ensure the third phase of the ERO can be implemented on February 1st 2023’.
“Lorraine O’Neill, President of the ISIA, reinforced this point highlighting that ‘with a cost-of-living crisis it is a disgrace that front line colleagues have not received a well-deserved pay increase’.
“Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail, Damien English, who has responsibility for the implementation of this ERO, must immediately move to have this injunction overturned before Christmas.
“Sinn Féin offers its full support to the workers, and their Trade Union, SIPTU, and also to the decent employers in who want the ERO implemented.”