Mid-ranking gardaí vote overwhelmingly for pay deal
Proposal set to cost exchequer €50m agreed to by 95% of AGSI membership
AGSI president Antoinette Cunningham: She said the result backs its contention that allowing gardaí use of State industrial relations agencies works. Photograph: Cyril Byrne
Mid-ranking gardaí have followed their rank-and-file colleagues in backing a pay deal, ending the threat of a widespread policing strike.
The Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors (AGSI) voted overwhelmingly to accept last month’s proposals from the Labour Court to resolve a row over pay and conditions. Some 95 per cent of AGSI members said “yes” to the deal, which will cost the exchequer some €50 million.
AGSI president Antoinette Cunningham said the result supported the organisation’s contention that allowing gardaí use of the State’s industrial relations agencies worked.
“This move was of particular importance to our members and recognition of their voice by the Government and the Labour Court was very well received.”
Ms Cunningham said the AGSI needed to move on from the recent industrial disputes which saw members of the force effectively threaten to carry out an unprecedented strike.
She told Pat Kenny on Newstalk radio that her organisation looks forward to establishing a relationship with the Labour Relations Commission, “which was a big part of the AGSI campaign due to the insufficient access we had to determine our pay and with regard to Garda pay into the future”.
“Moving on from this will be to establish structures and internal mechanisms within the Garda organisation to make sure that any dispute that happens in future never gets to the stage that it got to before.”
Ms Cunningham said the AGSI was looking forward to “helping to shape” the future of the industrial relations landscape for decades to come.
On Monday it emerged that about three-quarters of the 10,500-strong Garda Representative Association (GRA) membership voted “yes” to the Labour Court proposal.
The GRA’s central executive committee is meeting to discuss the implications of the outcome.
The deal struck last month, which averted withdrawal of service on four Fridays during November, includes a rent allowance of about €4,500 from the start of next year.
It also offers a €1,459 payment for the 15-minute shift handover period and a €1,500 payment for holidays because of the frequency with which officers sacrifice days off when called on duty.