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Labour must clarify position on equal pay for equal work – McDonald

11 January, 2013 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD

Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald TD has this morning called on the Tánaiste to clarify Labour’s position on equal pay for equal work.

Deputy McDonald said:

“During an interview on Morning Ireland Eamon Gilmore appeared to concede that Labour is no longer committed to the principle of equal pay for equal work.

“When quizzed about the Government’s decision to slash graduate nurse and midwives’ pay by 20% the Tánaiste robustly defended his party’s decision to forgo the principle of equal pay for equal work, suggesting this catchment of future HSE staff were lucky to get jobs in the first place.

“Pay inequity is rife throughout the public sector. Those at the top of the service continue to be paid substantially more than European counterparts, including hospital consultants and senior administrators.

“If the HSE or any other government department or agency are serious about reducing pay and pension expenditure, significant savings can be found by addressing excessive pay at the top. Instead the Tánaiste has chosen to protect high rollers and target those at the very bottom of the public sector pay grades.

“To be blunt it is incomprehensible that a Labour party leader would not only deepen pay inequity in the public sector, but would also robustly defend such a decision.

“Eamon Gilmore needs to publicly clarify the Labour’s party’s policy position on equal pay for equal work. Trade union leaders must also make this demand of the Labour leadership.”

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