Michael Taft, Research Officer, UNITE

Michael Taft of UNITE the union on why Irish Life staff have been forced into a dispute with their employer

Today, November 19 marks the third in a series of stoppages being undertaken by hundreds of Irish Life workers against their employer.

At stake are three inter-related issues:

  • the company’s attempt to impose a new pay-bargaining structure,
  • the persistence of poverty pay in Irish Life, and
  • management’s unilateral attempts to decide which employees it will bargain with and which it won’t.

But this is more than just a dispute over pay and conditions.  What’s at stake is the employer’s attempt to make a fundamental break between pay and profits by pitting workers against each other – between companies and across sectors. It is about management's refusal to acknowledge the role workers play in generating wealth...

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