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Reverse wage-round increases that benefit senior public servants more than others

Published in the
Thursday February 26 2009

…I do not hear Ireland‘s trade union leaders saying that under no circumstances will they accept a lowering of their members’ living standards. I do hear them saying that they resent public sector workers being singled out; and (more worryingly) that they are opposed to an attempt to simulate devaluation by cutting wages. However, their objection there is that while wage cuts only hurt workers, devaluations hurt everyone. Again, it is being singled out that bothers them.

Surely there is a political deal to be struck here. We do need to lower the cost of labour in order to save jobs. That does not mean that workers should bear a disproportionate share of the burden when it comes to reducing the ballooning budget deficit. We can’t afford a government that long fingers crucial decisions by subcontracting them to commissions: get the politics wrong, and the economic consequences will be disastrous. The time for comprehensive action is now.  Link to article

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