New public sector pay deal expected to be ratified by Monday

The successor to the Lansdowne Road public service pay agreement is expected to be ratified this Monday by most public service unions.

Sufficient unions have already backed the deal to make ratification almost inevitable - writes

The Garda Representative Association leadership today said it is to recommend that members should accept the new public service pay deal, despite reservations about some of its terms.

While the agreement provides for further restoration of pay cuts imposed during the recession, it also means that the full public service pension levy will be retained for certain government employees, including gardaí,who are entitled to retire on full pension without serving the usual 40 years.

The GRA executive decision will come as a relief to the Government, which this time last year was facing industrial action from gardaí over pay.

The Teachers' Union of Ireland and the Public Service Executive Union are set to deliver the results of their ballots on the deal today, while the votes of a further four unions are due tomorrow.

The proposals were negotiated between the Government and public service unions earlier this summer.

They set out a pathway for further restoration of pay cuts imposed during the economic crisis, as well as provisions on pensions and work practices.

However, they do not offer an immediate solution to the problem of lower pay rates for public servants recruited after 2012.

In the ratification process, each public service union is given a weighted number of votes out of a total of 2,892.

In order to be passed, the deal would need at least 1,447 votes.

Given that the two largest unions - SIPTU (719 votes) and IMPACT (606 votes) - have already balloted in favour of the deal, it would appear to be well on the way to ratification.

Also voting yes so far are the Prison Officers' Association (34 votes), the Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants (32 votes), the Medical Laboratory Scientists Association (19 votes), the Technical Engineering and Electrical Union (ten votes), the Building and Allied Trades Union (five votes), the Veterinary Officers Association (three votes) and the plasterers' union OPATSI (threevotes).

The Irish National Teachers' Organisation (314 votes) and Unite (60 votes) are both confirmed on the no side.

Today will see ballot results from the TUI (158 votes) which has recommended a no vote, and from the PSEU (113 votes) where a strong yes vote is expected.

On Friday the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (390 votes), the Civil Public and Services Union (128 votes) the Irish Medical Organisation (68 votes) and the Irish Federation of University Teachers (20 votes) will reveal the outcome of their ballots.

The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland will not complete a ballot until next month, and is recommending rejection.

Assuming the deal is carried, unions who reject it will then have to decide whether to abide by the aggregate vote of their majority union colleagues.

If not, then it remains to be seen if they will contemplate industrial action in pursuit of their grievances, and whether they will lose out on pay restoration or other benefits of the agreement.

Three other groups of public servants outside the Irish Congress of Trade Unions are also considering the LRA2 proposals.

The Psychiatric Nurses' Association has not yet decided when to ballot on the deal.

Read more news of Dublin.

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