Pay and the public sector

 

Sir, – On April 6th, your editorial, headlined “Two-tier teaching: It’s time to close the gap”, argued that the pay gap between so-called “new entrants” and others in the teaching profession should be closed.

Less than three weeks later, your editorial (April 25th) warns Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe against ceding to union demands for pay equity for new entrants, bizarrely stating that public service pay was the “prime cause” of the crisis in the public finances that led to austerity. (What a let-off for the banking and finance sectors, here and abroad.)

It would be a peculiar strain of equality that denied lower-paid staff – like cleaners, clerical officers, street sweepers and special needs assistants – the fairness you previously advocated for others. – Yours, etc,

BERNARD HARBOR,

Head of Communications,

Fórsa,

Nerney’s Court, Dublin 1.

Sir, – Your editorial states, among other things: “It seems as if almost everybody has forgotten that the unsustainable rise in public sector pay in the first decade of the 21st century was the prime cause of the crisis in the public finances that led to austerity.”

Well, thanks so very much for that clarification.

And there was I thinking all along that the crisis had something to do with the international banking crisis, the consequential collapse of the Irish banks, their being bailed out by the taxpayer and our narrow tax base.

And all along it was those nasty public servants, in their public offices, with their payslips! – Yours, etc,

MICK FAGAN,

Tallaght, Dublin 24.

Sir, – I do hope that Paschal Donohoe passes the test that your newspaper has set him of being tough on public pay. With an election looming, that policy would consign Fine Gael back to its rightful place – on the Opposition benches, – Yours, etc,

ANNE SLATTERY,

Dublin 8.