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Gavan welcomes SIPTU pay rise for Cleaners

3 November, 2016 - by Paul Gavan

Limerick based Sinn Féin Senator Paul Gavan has welcomed the announcement of a new Employment Regulation Order (ERO) for the Contract Cleaning Industry. The ERO has been negotiated between SIPTU, Ireland's largest trade union, and the Irish Contract Cleaning Association which represents employers in the sector. The new agreement is due to come into effect from the 1st December next.

Senator Gavan said:

“This new ERO will give a 10.7% wage rise over 2 years to all contract cleaners working across the State, bringing pay up from €9.75 to €10.80 by December 2018. All employers engaged in contract cleaning are required to comply with the agreement.

“The ambition of the new deal is to improve overall standards in the industry. It finally brings an end to the practice of cleaners working in the industry having to pay for their own uniforms. There have been thousands of cleaners up until now being charged a weekly fee for their uniforms - which has been a huge imposition on low wage earners.

“SIPTU have secured a good deal for the workers; it is the accumulation of a focussed strategy on building strength and density across this sector for the past number of years. I know that Limerick has been one area where union membership has increased substantially in the cleaning sector because of the focussed approach by SIPTU. It's evidence of the value of workers choosing to join a trade union and becoming organised.

“I spent a number of years working to organise contract cleaners in Limerick through SIPTU and I know how hard they work, and how they have been squeezed during the last decade of recession. This announcement is a significant step towards establishing a Living Wage for all Cleaners.” 

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