Dublin’s clampers threatening to go on strike

Clampers to ballot on industrial action on Monday

The clampers, who are members of Siptu, are being balloted on whether they should strike over a 2.5 per cent pay increase, which the union said has been outstanding since 2011. Photo: David Sleator

The clampers, who are members of Siptu, are being balloted on whether they should strike over a 2.5 per cent pay increase, which the union said has been outstanding since 2011. Photo: David Sleator

Sat, Mar 8, 2014, 01:01


A parking free-for-all could be on the cards with Dublin’s clampers threatening to go on strike over a pay dispute with their employers Dublin Street Parking Services (DSPS) .

The clampers, who are members of Siptu, are being balloted on Monday on whether they should strike over a 2.5 per cent pay increase, which the union said has been outstanding since 2011.

The company argued it could not pay the increase because it was not meeting “service levels” required by Dublin City Council. The council had set the company a target to clamp 60,000 vehicles a year.

The Labour Court last December recommended acceptance of proposals aimed at resolving the pay claim.

Under the proposals the company offered to pay staff a bonus of €2,000 each if the 60,000 target was reached this year. If overall targets are not met, only individual clampers who manage to clamp 2,800 vehicles in a year will be rewarded.

For staff involved in towing vehicles instead of clamping, the target is 1,467 relocations or removals.

The bonus for individual achievement is lower at €635. Staff will also get a 1.5 per cent increase in pay if the 60,000 target is met in 2014 and 2015. Previously, staff bonuses had been awarded on the basis of attendance at work.

Other performance-related benefits would allow staff to finish early if they clamp or tow a certain number of vehicles in one day.


Clamp-release fee

Dublin City Council pays DSPS about €6.1 million a year. But money taken in through clamp-release fees does not cover the cost and the service is run at a loss of some €2 million annually to the council.

In his 2012 annual report, published last April, the council-appointed parking appeals officer Liam Keilthy said the €80 clamp-release fee would need to be increased to €130 if the council were to recover the costs of operating the service. But the fee, set in 1998, can only be altered by the Dáil.

“By keeping the charge at 1998 levels, the 16 million compliant motorists who pay for their parking are effectively subsidising the 53,525 non-compliant motorists to the tune of €50 per clamp,” Mr Keilthy said.