The Programme for Prosperity and Fairness - a crap deal for workers


Around Christmas once every three years of so we enter into a special mating season in the industrial relations jungle. The mating of three unlikley species, the goverment, the bosses and the trade unions takes place. This spectacle is so spectacularly ugly to witness that it's never covered by TV cameras. Each mating season is given it's individual name and this time in 2002/03 attempts were under way to sire a son to the 'Programme for Prosperity and fairness'.

Campaigning for a minimum wage - Let's show them we are serious


CHRISTMAS IS well behind us but Scrooge refuses to go away. Bosses in many shops, restaurants, garages are still paying wages as low as £2.50 per hour. Civil Servants in junior clerical posts are still so badly paid that they qualify for the Family Income Supplement. Thousands of home helps employed by the Health Boards get as little as the £1.40 an hour paid by the Southern Board (incidentally this is a body packed with politicians and their friends).

Unions must come together to fight job losses


THE ATTACKS on jobs, wages & working conditions at TEAM and Irish Steel are only the beginning. The government wants to slim down a lot of public sector jobs, with a view to privatising the most profitable sections. They also want to defeat traditionally strong groups of workers. Such a defeats will demoralise a lot of people, and thus lower expectations of secure jobs and good wages.

Significant minority say no to Programme for Competitiveness and Work


AS EXPECTED the Irish Congress of Trade Unions Special Conference voted to accept the Programme for Competitiveness and Work, by 256 to 76. Unions opposed included the ATGWU, TEEU, MSF, NUJ and the FUGE which represents low paid messengers and cleaners in the civil service.

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