Irish public sector pay still amongst highest in Europe.
Lansdowne Road agreement a shameless vote grab.
Independent Commission required.
ISME, Tuesday 16th June 2015.
At the release of the CSO figures on Earnings and Labour Costs for 2014, ISME, the Irish Small & Medium Enterprises Association called for the establishment of an Independent Commission to examine public sector pay and recommend changes based on affordability and international comparisons. The Association also recommended an international chair for the commission to avoid any political interference.
According to ISME CEO, Mark Fielding, "The pay increases awarded in the new Lansdowne Road Agreement make no sense economically. It was merely a vote garnering exercise by a government who should really have known better. The public sector is paid far more than their private sector counterparts and excuses about differing education levels etc. simply do not wash. The sector is so sheltered it has no comprehension of the reality of our current economic situation - one of fledgling growth but continued struggle."
The one way to remove the public sector pay-setting from the politicians would be to introduce a Pay Commission, similar to the Low Pay Commission, a transparent process, chaired by an international expert. Without this, the public sector bargaining will once again revert to the tail wagging the political dog, compounding inequality, imbalance and unfairness and eroding competitiveness.
The Association called for:
A comprehensive international led commission to review public sector wages, conditions, perks and increments.
Improved efficiencies within the public sector to bring it to world class status.
"A strong public sector is an important and essential component of any modern economy, but it has to be efficient, cost effective and focused on delivering value for money. Increasing public sector pay in an environment where Ireland is currently borrowing €8 billion to run the country, does not make sense and will just add to the tax burden for all", concluded Fielding.