Where to now for union organising and bargaining?

This article will update readers on a couple of interesting and important developments for unionised workers in both the South and the North of Ireland. Two position papers have been published in the last couple of months on union recognition, collective bargaining, and the right to organise, and one piece of important legislation has been brought forward in the Northern Ireland Assembly. As readers will know, the Government in the South has instituted a high-level working group to review collective bargaining (including the ICTU) which will specifically look at the question of union recognition as well as wage-setting mechanisms. While […]

Let’s stop needless bureaucracy for bereaved families

When a loved one dies and after they are laid to rest, attention has to turn to get their affairs in order. This is no small task for grieving families.  For some, this will include starting the probate process, notifying insurance companies and financial institutions, cancelling utilities and subscriptions, closing social media and email accounts. For all, it will require contacting multiple government departments and official agencies to cancel benefits, entitlements, and public services.  During this extraordinarily difficult time, a bereaved relative is required to telephone, write or attend each relevant section within each public body to notify them of […]

Trade unionists tell Denis O’Brien to pay UK workers the rate for the job

It’s a story straight out of A Christmas Carol Union activists dressed as Scrooge characters will shortly be calling on the controversial billionaire Denis O’Brien to protest against the poor treatment of UK construction workers employed by his construction company. Denis O’Brien is the second richest man in Ireland. He is also the majority shareholder of Actavo, which was called Siteserv up until 2015. It carries out work at British Steel in Scunthorpe (UK) where scaffolders are being paid up to 15% below the agreed national rate. The Actavo (UK) workers have been on continuous strike for 9 weeks. Unite […]

He who pays the piper!

He who pays the piper …….! The EU has pledged money for the development of a “European newsroom” bringing together sixteen news agencies in a hub where news correspondents can work together on EU affairs. Under the coordination of German agency dpa, news agencies such as AFP (France) & ANSA (Italy) are participating. The consortium will launch in January and the integrated newsroom is expected to begin work next summer. The aim is to encourage cooperation at the EU level & news about the EU in several languages. The project was selected following a €1.76 million open call for proposals. […]

Programme for Disability Webinar 9 December 2021 December 08, 2021

The Annual Congress Disability Webinar will focus on workplace issues for people with disabilities and look at the policy context and the government support framework for disabled workers and employers across the island.    See this link for the PDF publication.

The WFTU on the International Day Of Persons with Disabilities, December 3rd 2021

Today more than one billion people, or approximately 15 percent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability, while 80 percent of them live in developing countries. We can all understand how difficult life for those persons and their families is, since in most cases they cannot find a job, or in heavy cases they cannot even take care of themselves. In developing countries, 80% to 90% of persons with disabilities of working age are unemployed, whereas in industrialized countries the figure is between 50% and 70%. Also, globally, a large percentage of those persons are disabled because of […]

Rush to introduce face masks in schools is counterproductive

Fórsa said today that it supports the use of face masks in schools, but said the Government’s rush to implement the practice will make it difficult to achieve. The union added that its school-based members – special needs assistants (SNAs), school secretaries, and caretakers – should not be asked to exclude students for refusing to wear a mask, as this is the responsibility of school principals and senior teachers. Fórsa’s head of education, Andy Pike, also welcomed the fact that education department guidelines exempt children with special educational needs from the requirement to wear masks if it would cause difficulties […]

Climate Change March in Dublin 6th March

Trade Union Activists from across Dublin marched on Saturday last to vent their frustration at the lack of progress by the Dublin Government on Climate change. Speakers It particular, they argued that climate change has not been caused by us as individual humans. Instead they prove that a global system in place since the onset of the industrial revolution, has always placed profit in a marketplace above the needs of those who create the wealth, leading inevitably to climate catastrophe. Something highlighted by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels over one hundred and fifty years ago. For a critical look at […]

International struggle: The WFTU supports the U.S. workers’ struggles

Sweeping across the United States, a dramatic increase in rank and file Labor struggles, including several high profile economic strikes in various sectors, has charged U.S. class tensions to a degree not seen in many decades. 12,000 carpenters, 10,000 John Deere heavy farm equipment manufacturers, 31,000 Kaiser health care workers, 60,000 Hollywood TV, theater and film production workers, 1,100 Alabama coal miners and 1,400 Kellogg cereal factory workers are among tens of thousands of workers involved this year in strikes against 178 employers, including 12 strikes of 1,000 or more workers for better wages and working conditions. This is against […]

Waiting list plan must include integrated care Forsa

Fórsa has said the HSE’s new acute waiting list action plan, published last week, must focus on the community-led, integrated care plan central to Sláintecare or face failure. The plan aims to reduce projected acute waiting lists by 150,000. The union has welcomed the initiative, which identifies a number of actions designed to reduce a projected spike in waiting lists toward the end of this year. But it warned that failure to utilise the integrated care model, where service users can access initial treatment in a community setting, will prolong reliance on acute hospitals and drive up waiting lists. The Sláintecare […]