Public service unions and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform are to engage in early September to explore the potential for a successor to the Public Service Stability Agreement (PSSA), which expires at the end of this year.
In a meeting with Fórsa general secretary Kevin Callinan and other union leaders earlier this week, new Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Michael McGrath also confirmed that the new Government would meet its commitment to pay the final PSSA instalment – worth 2% of gross pay – on 1st October.
Despite some media speculation, this had been expected because the commitment was included in the recently-agreed programme for government.
The programme also confirmed that the Government wants a successor to the PSSA, which sets pay and working conditions for staff across the civil and public service including voluntary hospitals and other ‘section 38’ bodies. Public service pay agreements are also applied in non-commercial State agencies.
Prior to February’s general election, Fórsa had been advocating for earlier negotiations. But protracted talks on Government formation – plus the coronavirus crisis – made this impossible.
Unions expect the negotiations to be extremely difficult because of the economic and fiscal damage wrought by the pandemic.
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