Anger among workers after second wage delay in a month

Bank of Ireland apologises, says credits will be in accounts by end of day

Bank of Ireland is looking into complaints from customers that wages have not arrived in their accounts this morning. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

Bank of Ireland is looking into complaints from customers that wages have not arrived in their accounts this morning. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

Thu, Aug 28, 2014, 16:17

There was anger among public sector workers today after their wages were delayed for the second time in a month due to a problem at Bank of Ireland.

Bank of Ireland apologised to those affected and said all credits would be in accounts by the end of the day.

Asked about the cause of the incident the bank said it was “under investigation”.

Gardaí were “incensed” by this happening “not only once, but twice,” PJ Stone, general secretary of the Garda Representative Association said.

The bank did not give figures on the number of people impacted by the delay but based on the number of organisations impacted it is thought to be in the thousands.

Many gardaí and teachers were among those who did not receive their salaries early this morning after problems with payments sent Bank of Ireland to AIB, Ulster Bank and Permanent TSB.

Bank of Ireland customers were not impacted by salary payment delays. Bank of Ireland said “all other banks have now received any delayed payment originating from Bank of Ireland”.

Gardai who had just finished night shifts were the first to become aware of the problem “when their cards were refused at checkouts and garages as they made their way home,” Mr Stone said.

While he did not know exactly how many members were affected he said the number of calls to the organisation suggested it was “significant”. The Government had yet to “ explain what they are doing to fix the problem,” he said.

“This is simply not good enough. The problem has manifested twice and no one seems to have addressed this. Our members are angry,” he said.

The Public Service Executive Union (PSEU) said the delays were “completely unacceptable”. While the problem was not as widespread as the last time it was “still a problem twice in four weeks,” he said.

“Pay deals are one thing but its another thing to talk about not being paid full stop,” he said. He said the union had contacted the Department of Public Expenditure about the issue.

Labour TD Michael McCarthy said the bank must answer questions about the latest banking problems . “This is the second time in a month that an incident of this nature has occurred at the bank, and it is causing huge difficulties for the public servants affected,” he said.

“It is simply not good enough that this should happen once, let alone twice.” “We need an assurance from Bank of Ireland that this issue will be sorted promptly and most importantly, a guarantee that it will not happen again,” he added. “Apart from being deeply distressing, it is also disturbing that a leading bank would allow this to happen twice in one month at a time when the economy is turning.”

The Irish National Teachers’ Organisation (INTO) said in a notice on its website that all teachers should be paid by close of business. It said pensions had not reached accounts of some retired teachers and non-teaching staff .

The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland (ASTI) said it had been notified that some retired secondary school teachers did not receive their payments and they could be expected by close of business.

The Department of Education said the bank advised it that all payments would be credited by this afternoon.

Ulster Bank said customers impacted by today’s issue can withdraw up to €500 from one of its branches “ if they provide their payslip and suitable ID”. “We can also assist to arrange a refund of fees and charges applied as a direct result of this issue,” a spokeswoman said.

Permanent TSB said on Twitter that it hoped to have “all payments processed between 3pm and 5pm today”. It said the problem was a “third party” one and was out of its control.

AIB said all payments received from Bank of Ireland this morning had now been processed.

The bank began investigating the payments after many people took to social media this morning to complain to banks that their wages had not arrived in their accounts.

Last month tens of thousands of workers were not paid their wages after a Bank of Ireland glitch.

Additional reporting PA