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Croke Park Extension Talks - News Update 11. 24.02.13

Sunday morning, 24 February 2013

Attention All INMO Members

Dear Colleague

Just a brief note to update you in relation to the ongoing talks on a possible extension to the Croke Park Agreement.

A summary of the main developments over yesterday (Saturday) is as follows:

1.    Working Hours

Late yesterday (Saturday evening) the Labour Relations Commission produced a document, for the consideration of both sides, which essentially would involve the following:

  • all staff who work less than 37 hours would move to a working week of 37 hours;
  • staff who work more than 37 hours but less than 39 hours would move to a working week of 39 hours;
  • this would mean that the working week for nurses and midwives would revert back to 39 hours per week; and
  • staff who currently work 39 hours would remain on that working week but in the even of having to work overtime the first hour would be free.

I stress this is a working document, is not agreed, and will be the subject of further discussions this morning (Sunday, 24th February 2013).

2.    Increments

The management side, during the course of yesterday, indicated that they were seeking the following:

-    a complete freeze on all increments for all public servants; and
-    a step back (no details supplied) for every public servant who is on the maximum of their scale.

This again is not agreed, is simply a management position, and is again to be the subject of further discussions during today.

3.    Outsourcing

There was an initial discussion, yesterday evening, on outsourcing, against the union side’s contention that direct public employment levels should be maintained, and further discussions are to continue today.

The INMO Executive Council, met, in special session, yesterday evening to review the current talks process and all issues of concern for INMO members.

The Executive Council has reiterated our long standing position that the existing income of members must be maintained, as part of this process, as our members are not in a position to suffer any further pay cuts.

In the context of this clear position it is probable that today’s discussions will be very critical.  Apart from continuing the discussions on the foregoing issues e.g. working hours, today’s engagement will include further discussion on the key issue of premium pay.  I would currently remind you that the management side are seeking to reduce premium earnings, on a Sunday, from double time to time and a half and to abolish, altogether, unsocial payment hours for Saturdays and twilight shifts.  These changes would result in a very serious cut in members’ income, in excess of 10% to 12%, which would be totally unacceptable and could never be part to any agreement.

We will continue to issue further updates, as developments unfold during today, and, indeed, the talks will inevitably be covered, extensively, in the media.  However we would earnestly ask members to watch for INMO updates, and our website, for full and complete information on matters of concern to members.

Thank you for your attention to this note and please circulate it widely amongst our members in your workplace.

Yours sincerely

General Secretary



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