Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan has called on the government to immediately take action to ensure that Limerick security workers can access a badly needed pay rise for their sector.
Speaking after attending a SIPTU union meeting for security staff, Senator Gavan said:
“A new Employment Regulation Order (ERO) for the sector has been held up by a court injunction since 24th August last.
“As a result, scheduled pay rises to lift hourly pay to €12.90 by next February have been put on hold. I made a call then for the Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail, Damien English, to immediately challenge the injunction.
“Unfortunately to date the minister seems content to let the legal process around the injunction meander on for months.
“In the meantime, security staff who worked in the front line throughout Covid, are expected to live on just €11.65 an hour. It looks like another case of a government being happy to applaud front line workers, but not prepared to stand up for their right to a decent rate of pay.
“The workers I met last weekend have had enough, and are ready to ballot for strike action, and I can’t say I blame them. They are disgusted at the lack of action from the Minister.
“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.
“The ERO would secure rights to a basic rate of pay, the right to sick pay, and the right to payments should they get injured on the job.
“This industry has been cutting costs over the last number of years and the only people to really suffer have been the operatives who stand on the frontline representing the companies they work for.
“Minister English, who has responsibility for the implementation of this ERO, must immediately move to have this injunction overturned.
“Sinn Féin offers its full support to the workers and their Trade Union, SIPTU.”