Richard Bruton: spokesman said  ensuring an adequate supply of skilled workers was a key objective of the Government. Photograph: Frank Miller

Some occupations deemed eligible but others have been removed from the list

Nurses claim the scale of overcrowding in hospital emergency departments last month was 40 per cent higher than in August of last year. Image: Thinkstock.

Nurses claim 6,518 patients seeking admission to hospitals left on trolleys last month

HSE  director general Tony O’Brien said that about €1.4 billion in additional funding would be required to maintain the existing levels of service

Director general Tony O’Brien warns against health service ‘standing still’

The Government has consistently refused to publish the details of these “side deals”. Photograph: Getty Images

Pay proposals are part of an agreed industrial relations process across public service

An Intercity train. File photograph: Irish Rail/Iarnród Éireann

EU Commission wants changes that would open up sector to competitors

Mr Justice George Birmingham: “That recently appointed judges are being treated less favourably than other entrants to the public service is invidious.” Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Newly appointed judges are the subject of ‘invidious discrimination’, Howlin told

  Ged  Nash: measures bring Irish law into line with recent rulings of the EU Court of Justice. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Government initiative to implement EU directive comes into force from Saturday

Leo Varadkar held ‘constructive meeting’ with hospitals on Friday evening

A file image showing Iarnród Éireann taking delivery of a new intercity railcar carriage in 2011. Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Siptu says proposal is a ‘clear and naked attack’ on Ireland’s railway workers

Medical scientists supported the proposals by a margin of 82 per cent to 18 per cent. File photograph: Getty Images

Agreement on public service pay now certain of being ratified by Ictu in autumn

The HSE said it has been unable to deliver cost savings ‘because our focus has been on opening/maintaining additional bed and other capacity’.

Service unable to cut costs ‘because our focus has been on opening additional bed capacity’

Liam Casey FM Consulting was paid €3,444 for a report on facilities management services in the Mid-Western Regional Hospital, Limerick in November 2012. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Extended contract breached €207,000 threshold for EU tendering

Cork University Hospital: The HSE internal audit also raises queries regarding the payment of allowances on top of salary to a number of senior nurses in Cork and Kerry. Photograph:  Patrick Hogan/Provision

Doctor was working for another part of HSE in addition to own hospital

The union, which represents about 1,000 staff in the health service, local authorities, education and semi-State sectors, said its members backed the deal by a margin of 52 per cent to 48 per cent.

TEEU represents about 1,000 staff in public service

The study commissioned by the Irish Nurses’ and Midwives’ Organisation found a quarter of nurses and midwives said they had turned up for work at least once while feeling sick in the last year.

More than 40 per cent believe their health is not important to employers

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar: said current system for dealing with brain injury cases is ‘very adversarial’. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Irish society is ‘willing to bear’ the cost of brain injury cases, says Minster for Health

Last year, the HSE was forced to spend a record €336 million on agency staff and overtime to fill vacancies.

Need to hire driven by low pay, geography and specific skill shortages, says memo

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Minister for Health wants trusts to be permitted to behave like semi-State companies

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin. File photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Body recommends public competition in appointment of senior managers

 Siptu president Jack O Connor. The union’s public service members have voted to support the new Lansdowne Road pay agreement. Photograph: The Irish Times

Most public service employees now likely to receive wage rise of €2,000 in three phases

HSE national director for acute hospitals Liam Woods. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times.

Health committee told collusion between suppliers and purchasers ‘difficult’ to detect

The HSE says a relocation package is available for nurses and midwives who would like to come and work in the Irish health service

Up to 500 nurses and midwives sought in new recruitment initiative

Tánaiste Joan Burton: said that any PRSI anomalies arising from the recommendations in the Low Pay Commission report would be addressed in the forthcoming budget. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Employers’ social insurance rates should be increased to fund social wage, says union

Taoiseach Enda Kenny described some of the examples of the  anomalies as “quite stark”.

Commission highlights anomalies which could see earnings fall on foot of rises

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny with Tanaiste Joan Burton and Richard Bruton, Minister for Jobs at the launch of the Low Pay Commission earlier this year. Photograph: Cyril Byrne /The Irish Times

Proposed increase does not address eight-year stagnation of minimum wage, says report

Fair Deal review: Fianna Fáil warned that Government pledges on the scheme should be treated with scepticism. Photograph: Getty Images

Age action welcomes pledge not to increase contributions from nursing home residents

 Minister for  Social Care Kathleen Lynch said Government would seek to generate efficiencies from administrative reforms in the Fair Deal nursing homes scheme. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Long-term sustainability of Fair Deal scheme remains to be seen, given demographics

Minister for Public Expenditure & Reform, Brendan Howlin,  said it would be up to the next government to decide on a new mechanism for objectively determining public service pay. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Howlin says he will read Fine Gael think tank proposals on determining public service pay

Minister of State at the Department of Health Kathleen Lynch said the Government was not contemplating any fundamental change to eligibility for the Fair Deal nursing home support scheme. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times.

Minister of State says review shows nursing home support scheme to be ‘fair and transparent’

Q&A by Martin Wall as report on nursing home scheme published

Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

Low Pay Commission expected to call for an extra 50 cent an hour in report for Minister

Allegations set out in an  RTÉ Investigations Unit programme regarding  the publicly funded St Vincent’s University Hospital are understood not to have  been included in an  original letter from a whistleblower sent to  Minister for Health Leo Varadkar.  File photograph: Dave Meehan

Whistleblower concerns over some hospitals first raised with Varadkar last September

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at the national economic dialogue conference at Dublin Castle. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Workers’ groups lobby for increased funds for services at national economic dialogue

 Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin speaking at the Government’s  national economic dialogue in Dublin yesterday. Photograph: Sara Freund

Model, which would allow schools determine spending, should be piloted, Minister says

Taoiseach Enda Kenny criticised social partnership as practised by previous administrations. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Government at pains to point out exercise aimed at listening, not set of negotiations

Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton speaking before the National Economic Dialogue at Dublin Castle. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

Simon Harris says level at which 7% USC kicks in is ‘penal’ and effects productivity

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at the National Economic Dialogue conference at Dublin Castle on Thursday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne /The Irish Times

Employers group warns against removing too many people from the tax base

Taoiseach Enda Kenny at the national economic dialogue conference at Dublin Castleon Thursday. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Taoiseach says Budget will ensure work pays more than welfare

The Coalition’s scope for meeting demands within the current spending parameters appears limited. Photograph: Getty Images

Talks objective is not to yield an overall agreement with which everyone will concur

Social justice campaigners are expected to argue against a low-tax economic model. Photograph: Getty Images

Social justice groups argue for greater spend on social infrastructure in new talks process

The paper, drawn up by the Department of Finance and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, warns that under a “no policy change” scenario expenditure on the two State pension schemes could reach €7.5billion by 2026.

Demographic pressures will hit cost of two State pension schemes in years ahead

The report says that seasonally adjusted employment peaked in the first quarter of 2008 at 2.16 million.

Attracting back emmigrants and urging greater participation by women urged

The “living wage” calls for the introduction of an hourly rate of €11.45. Photograph: Getty Images

Ibec says proposal would hurt employment and not address real challenges of poverty

Le Grand Salon reception room at the Irish Embassy in Paris. Photograph: Alan Betson

New figures show State’s diplomatic properties abroad are valued at almost €90 million

The executive committee of the Irish Federation of University Teachers (Ifut) will meet to decide on a recommendation for members on the proposed new Lansdowne Road pay deal at the end of  July.  File photograph: Getty Images

Ifut unhappy at shelving of planned €1,000 pay hike set for 2017 in Lansdowne Road deal

Clerys department store, O’Connell Street, Dublin. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Conference condemns ‘shameful and callous treatment’ of department store’s workers

Tánaiste Joan Burton supports the living wage initiative which calls for a minimum wage rate of €11,45 per hour.

Tanáiste criticises ‘predatory capitalism’ involved in Clerys department store closure

Trade union representatives should stop navel gazing and internal squabbling and concentrate on assisting workers to escape the curse of inequality, the general secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions Patricia King (above) has said

Ictu chief urges unions to make use of new industrial relations legislation

File photograph of Tom Geraghty from The Public Service Executive Union at the Department of Finance. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Ictu conference hears growth could reach 3 to 4 per cent on average

John Douglas, president of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, speaking at a Right2Water press conference in March. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Ictu head John Douglas: Water charge campaign biggest ‘mass social mobilisation’ ever in State

Shay Cody, general secretary of Impact, says the whole country needs a pay rise following the long period of wage stagnation. Picture Jason Clarke Photography.

Support of largest public service union boosts prospects of agreement’s ratification

Employers should be restricted from being directors of companies for up to five years if they fail to meet their obligations to their employees, the Irish Congress of Trade Unions  has urged. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Employers who fail to meet obligations to staff should be banned as directors, says Ictu

Minister for Defence Simon Coveney. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Draft White Paper on defence policy outlines main security threats over the next 10 years

Universal health insurance  would abolish Ireland’s existing two-tier system with a single tier system by effectively making everyone a private patient Photograph: Andrew Wong/Reuters

Report casts doubt on viability of Government health plan as costs far higher than thought

The ASTI and TUI are recommending rejection of the  proposed new public service pay deal, while the  INTO has urged members to support it. File photograph: Stephen Shepherd/The Image Bank/Getty Images

TUI urges members to reject pay deal but INTO urges support for proposals in ballot

Irish Congress of Trade Unions general secretary Patricia King. Ictu aims to set out the response of political parties to its charter at its upcoming conference in Ennis. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Document calls for living-wage rate of €11.45 per hour and end to zero-hour contracts

The Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants (AHCPS) described the proposed new Lansdowne Road agreement as “deeply disappointing”.

AHCPS warns of possible industrial action over proposed Lansdowne Road agreement

Philip Smith  claimed he was made the ‘fall guy’ by RSA when certain issues emerged at the Irish business in October 2013. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Smith brought constructive dismissal case against insurer RSA over 2013 resignation

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar said the EU directive is not a “panacea” and that patients will have to pay upfront, and find someone abroad to accept their doctor’s referral. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin.

Leo Varadkar says the directive will help to boost case for increasing Irish health budget

Clerys staff and supporters during a protest outside Clerys on O’Connell Street, Dublin last week. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/ Collins

Minster says no law can stop capitalism ‘operating in the way it does’

Minster for Health Leo Varadkar has said it would be inappropriate to meet with GPs from south Tipperary where opposition is strongest to the Government’s plans. Photograph: Colin Keegan/ Collins Dublin.

Minister says inappropriate to meet with Tipperary GPs who are opposed to plan

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar said “steady progress on metrics like delayed discharges and in-patient admissions” showed that the health service plans  put in place at the start of the year are beginning to take effect. Photograph:  Nick Bradshaw.

Large amount of overrun relates to acute hospitals and social care services

Mick Harris and Robbie O’Connor of the  Best of Irish Design clothing firm load stock from the now-closed Clerys department store into  a van on Wednesday, June 17th, 2015. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Minister says he is deeply concerned at treatment of workers as store liquidated

Leo Varadkar: ‘One of best things about general practice in Ireland is that they are independent, autonomous practitioners with different sources of funding.’ Photograph:  Brian Lawless/PA Wire

Extension of free GP care and improved drug subsidy scheme for Coalition second term

Lord Mayor of Dublin Christy Burke at the demonstration in support of Clerys workers outside the store in O’Connell Street, Dublin, yesterday. Photograph: Eric Luke

130 workers entitled to two weeks’ payment for every year of service, plus bonus week

Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash is to prepare a report on the closure of Clerys for the Government amid growing anger at the treatment of workers who were employed there. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

Enda Kenny says company law review group might look at sale of retailer

Danny McCoy, head of employers’ group Ibec, says the tradition of a single job with a single employer has become the exception. Photograph: Gary O’Neill

Move is away from lifetime careers with collectively bargained or universal terms

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar is looking at other models of UHI such as single payer insurance, as well as a model funded fully through taxation using social insurance. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Minister asks researchers to look at model offering different degrees of cover for patients

Brendan Howlin said new €90 initiative will not compromise economic recovery

IBOA general secretary Larry Broderick: “We believe it is time for an increase in remuneration after a pay freeze lasting over six years – especially since this has been a period of major restructuring within AIB involving a substantial reorganisation of the business and significant job losses.” Photograph: Tommy Clancy

Finance union IBOA to look for deal in line with recent agreement with Bank of Ireland

The Irish Medical Organisation (IMO) has urged doctors not to pay a proposed 13 per cent increase in the annual retention fee levied by the Medical Council. File photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Organisation says there is no justification for proposed increase in annual retention levy

The executive of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation has joined  trade unions including Siptu, Impact and the Irish National Teachers Organisation in supporting the proposed Landowne Road pay deal.

INMO says proposals are ‘minimalist and could have been much more positive’

Operators say dignity of residents being compromised because of State failure

The HSE was given seven years after the introduction of Hiqa regulations to bring units up to compliance. That deadline expires this year. Photograph: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Tony O’Brien warned of ‘critical’ need for State investment in letter to department

The Minister of State for Health, Kathleen Lynch, said: “If we don’t do anything, we’re going to have serious problems.” Photograph: Eric Luke

Eleven facilities will not meet Hiqa standards unless they are rebuilt or renovated

People taking part in a protest rally in Dublin on Saturday in support of a campaign for improved conditions of employment for workers at Dunnes Stores. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times

Dublin rally attended by about 3,000 hears calls for Government action to help workers

The country’s largest trade union, Siptu, is to urge its members to support the proposed new public service pay deal

Lansdowne Road deal supported by Impact and INTO, but opposed by IMO and TUI

Lansdowne House in  Ballsbridge, Dublin, where a new public sector pay deal was agreed. File Photograph: Matt Kavanagh/The Irish Times

New processes established to address public sector union grievances

The Teachers Union of Ireland (TUI) is to urge its members to reject the proposed new Lansdowne Road public service pay deal in a forthcoming ballot.

Impact urges 60,000 members to accept the proposed agreement

The Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants union has said its members were treated in an “inequitable manner” under the proposed new Lansdowne Road agreement on pay restoration.

Proposed agreement on pay restoration to be put to a ballot of union’s membership

Staff on low incomes who cannot benefit fully from the pension levy changes will receive special salary increases to bring them up to the €1,000 level. Photograph: Getty Images

Minsters and high earners excluded from some increases under changes to draft deal

Brendan Howlin, Minister for Publin Expenditure and Reform, speaking to the media outside  Lansdown House. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Proposals also places new restrictionson outsourcing in public service

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin said the public service pay deal would cost €566 million over three years  and would “secure a peaceful industrial relations environment until September 2018”. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times.

€566 million deal with Government involves phased increases over two years

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin has indicated  his priority in the pay restoration talks would be to assist those on low pay. Photograph: Eric Luke

Pay restoration deal set to be offered in talks over Haddington Road extension

 Minister for Health Leo Varadkar: “Clearly relations between the HSE and St Vincent’s are not in a good place. There does need to be more dialogue between the two and for necessary information to be made available to the HSE.” File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Department of Health to convene talks to resolve the parties’ outstanding issues

Public service staff are expected to receive a boost in earnings of about €1,000 next year under a pay restoration deal being finalised.

Similar pay boost for State employees on the table for 2017

Siptu said “this revelation would seem to confirm the worst fears of Aer Lingus staff that a takeover by IAG will mean major job losses”. Photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Political reaction: Fianna Fáil calls for suspension of Dáil vote on sale of stake in airline

The group that runs St Vincent’s hospital   has clashed with the HSE. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Boundaries between voluntary hospitals and new hospital groups will have to be drawn

HSE chief Tony O Brien: Took the decision on foot of “specific allegations” received concerning the broader group which operates the publicly-funded St Vincent’s and St Michael’s hospitals in Dublin and the associated St Vincent’s Private Hospital. Photograph: The Irish Times

Move comes after Health Service Executive receives ‘specific allegations’

 Leo Varadkar, Minister for Health:  The board wrote  to him saying  until it had evidence of ‘real and constructive engagement’ on matters of concern, ‘we believe we must pause our engagement with the project’. Photograph: Cyril Byrne / The Irish Times

Board of St Vincent’s suspends involvement due to dispute with HSE and current hospital

Potential deal would likely boost earnings on average by between €800 and €1,000 per year. Photograph: Getty Images

Negotiations expected to move on to pay restoration and industrial relations accord

The Cabinet has agreed to sell the State’s 25 per cent stake in Aer Lingus.   Fine Gael and Labour believe they have won significant concessions from IAG in relation to the proposal.

Aer Lingus ‘does not foresee’ redundancies or outsourcing in IAG deal

The introduction of free GP care for children is one of the Government’s key healthcare reforms. While a deal was reached with the IMO several weeks ago, the plan has been strongly opposed by the National Association of General Practitioners

New assurances on scheme for children under six years given to GPs

The report argues that the widespread use of agency nurses in inpatient hospital units – who are often unfamiliar with patient issues and hospital processes – should be phased out. Photograph: Joerg Reimann/Getty Images

International study largely positive, but points to delays in cancer care

The Government recently reached a deal with the Irish Medical Organisation on the provision of free GP care for children under six. Photograph: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

Competition commission fears GP body encouraging boycott of proposed new scheme

Aer Lingus chief executive  Stephen Kavanagh at Dublin Airport. The trade union Impact has said that any assurances that the IAG aviation group has given in relation to the proposed sale of the State’s stake in Aer Lingus are worthless.  Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Union passes motion on proposed sale of State’s stake in airline to aviation group

The Government wants unions to re-affirm their commitment to industrial relations peace and the provisions for binding arbitration which were set out in the Croke Park and Haddington Road accords. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Draft paper backs binding arbitration in disputes and rules out strikes

Negotiations between trade unions and Government representatives on pay restoration for about 300,000 staff in the public service will begin in earnest this week.

Talks between unions and Government representatives resume on Tuesday afternoon

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar said he disagreed with the original plan for the group to be part of the HSE structure. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons / The Irish Times

Minister Leo Varadkar says it will now be independent body, not ‘sub-agency’ of HSE

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