herald

Saturday 10 December 2016

Three more garda strike days called off pending ballot

General Secretary Pat Ennis
General Secretary Pat Ennis

The threat of three garda strikes this month has been deferred.

Following a meeting yesterday, the Garda Representative Association's (GRA) central executive committee decided to suspend the work stoppages.

The association will ballot 10,500 members on a Labour Court recommendation that could resolve the row.

A strike planned for last Friday by the GRA was called off at the 11th hour.

Failure

GRA general secretary Pat Ennis has urged his members to remain "resolute and determined" as they start voting.

Mr Ennis said the failure of their "political masters" had brought them "to this tipping point".

"There are options available to us," he said.

"It is an understatement to say that this has been a difficult and unprecedented situation but we have now demonstrated that we can be resolute and responsible to be afforded full collective bargaining rights, including trade union status.

"Inactivity has reigned over progress and our patience has been tested. We have fully complied with all that has been asked of us, and we have delivered on our responsibilities.

"The failure of our political masters to deliver upon theirs took us to this tipping point. We must decide how to proceed.

"I ask you to persevere with the solidarity that gives us any semblance of power in the industrial relations landscape. We must remain resolute and determined and we will prevail."

He said members would be informed of the implications of the new offer to increase pay and reform their terms and conditions before they vote.

Allowance

Labour Court proposals worth an estimated €3,600 per garda, mean gardai would get a €500 rise in rent allowance from January 1. The allowance would become part of their basic pay from that date, pushing up their overtime and premium pay.

They would also get a €15 premium payment for each day of annual leave in recognition that they can sometimes have to give up holidays to attend court. They would also get paid for holding 15-minute briefings before their shifts from January 1.

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