Government must commit to equal pay for equal work by 2020 - David Cullinane TD
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Workers' Rights David Cullinane TD has said that the Government must commit to pay equalisation by 2020.
Speaking in the Dáil today, deputy Cullinane said;
"My colleague Jonathan O'Brien cannot be here today unfortunately, but on his behalf I wish to express the view that unequal pay for equal work is unacceptable in any progressive society, be it within the public or private sector.
"The current inequality within our public sector is increasingly unjustifiable in a time of sustained economic growth.
"Sinn Féin opposed the lower pay scales when they were imposed by the Government and have held successive Governments to account on this issue since. Today over 60,000 of our public sectors workers draw less pay than their colleagues for equal work.
"This includes over 20 percent of workers in our education sector, and a quarter of the workforce in our health services. Today, 10,000 of our nurses receive less pay for equal work while fighting on the front line of a creaking and mismanaged health system.
"This reality is no longer tenable and road map to equal pay is clear.
"It is our position that pay equalisation can and should be achieved in its entirety within the period of the current Public Service Stability Agreement, with post-January 2011 entrants attaining equal pay with their colleagues, for equal work, by the close of 2020.
"However, there is a longer journey to travel. The report sought to examine the inequality of pay scales, but failed to consider the abolition of allowances that followed, which contributed to a further pay gap between those who started before 2011 and those who were unfortunate enough to start after.
"This report, while examining one element of the cuts, failed to acknowledge or examine the losses endured by those Section 39 workers who have suffered without any moves to pay restoration.
"While the issue of pay inequality can and should be redressed now, it must be one part of a broader envelope of redress for all workers that have suffered since the age of austerity began."