July 5, 2022
Minister must deliver pay justice for striking IWA & Community Workers – Senator Paul Gavan

Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan has called on the Government to immediately intervene in industrial disputes involving SIPTU members from the Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) and the Community Sector.

This week sees one day stoppages by Irish Wheelchair Association workers and a wide range of Section 39 Community Workers, seeking a their first pay rise in 14 years.

Speaking in the Seanad, Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan said:

“This is justified industrial action by the staff at the Irish Wheelchair Association who have been ignored by successive governments.

“Workers from the IWA tell us they haven’t had a pay rise since 2008 – 14 years ago. The Minister says it is between the IWA and their workers. This is not a good enough.

“The only way these workers can secure a pay increase is through a government decision to increase the HSE grant.

“These are front line workers who provide an essential service in the homes of their clients – some of whom, without these amazing women and men, would be housebound and isolated.

“The government needs to recognise that these workers do the same work as Health Care Assistants in the Health Service and ensure steps towards pay parity for them.

“In a similar vein community workers from essential organisations like the Rehab Group, Western Care, Pieta House, Ability West, Job Clubs and LEADER are also taking strike action.

“And again it is has been 14 years since they last got a pay increase. The government must stop pretending these disputes have nothing to do with them.

“Ministers must step up and engage with SIPTU in good faith and deliver badly needed pay rises for these workers.”

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