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Ireland’s minimum wage increase: Trade union with disagreement

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) withdrew from the Low Pay Commission following a disagreement over the minimum wage increase. The move comes as other members of the commission were unwilling to raise the minimum wage by more than 10 per cent by 2021.

The Commission has been in extensive discussions with the Union on the minimum wage rate for 2021. But others are reluctant to raise wages by one to more than 10%.

So ICTU General Secretary Patricia King and Mandate General Secretary Jerry Light said they had no choice but to withdraw from the commission.

The leaders made it clear that the lowest-paid workers in the Republic of Ireland should be prepared to pay at least a 2 percent increase similar to other sectors of the economy, and that they could not conscientiously accept any of the Commission’s recommendations that could not do so.

Many workers on the minimum wage are part of the essential sector that will help move the economy forward through during the Covid-19 pandemic. Therefore, they should be given at least a 2 per cent increase in the national minimum wage.

The position that the lowest paid workers in the country will not be given a decent and reasonable increase cannot be accepted.

Since the financial crisis of 2008 and the resulting recession, there has been a proportional decline in the minimum wage in society.

Both pointed out that they would not be involved in the process of leaving them behind and with regret informed that they cannot be a part of the Low Pay Commission.

The general secretaries said that we will continue to campaign through other platforms to get a fair increase.

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