A successor to the ‘Croke Park Agreement’ has been finalized that will see cuts of 1 Billion Euro from the Government pay bill. The deal includes pay cuts for all staff, and up to 10% for top-earners, additional hours of work at no extra pay, and reductions in allowances and premium payments. As many as nine Unions have already indicated that they will not support the new deal and are recommending that their membership reject it. The consequences of being outside of the new arrangements are likely to make for a very difficult situation for the Unions. It is very … Continue reading Government ‘Divide & Conqueror’ Strategy to Test the Resolve of Public Sector Unions
The ruling Fianna Fail Party was trounced in the 2011 election. At 17% of the vote they seemed to be on the very edge of oblivion. Fine Gael and Labour had brushed them aside, bolted into power on a wave of optimism about ‘real change’ and ‘burning the bond-holders’ (a reference to not paying back bank loans to unsecured bond-holders in Europe). For a while it seemed that there might actually be some a change in direction. But alas it is now clear that the current Government has merely assimilated the trappings of power worn with such gusto by Fianna … Continue reading Further Fianna Fail Poll Surge Is The Low-Mark Of Irish Despondency
The Irish Government response to the release of the Report into the extent of Irish State involvement in the now infamous ‘Magdalene Laundries was very poor indeed. Taoiseach Enda Kenny botched the response and unwittingly inflicted more stress and hardship on the victims. The easy and honorable thing to do would have been to immediately apologise to the victims of what were essentially State-Sponsored Labour camps. Instead of apologising Enda Kenny decided that his Government needed more time to examine and consider the findings of the Report. Now, in respect of putting together a proper financial compensation package for the … Continue reading Irish Government Finally Issues Apology to Magdalene Survivors
Ok, he was not really Irish but in the true Irish tradition of claiming association to just about anything that is good we Irish are claiming the Saint as our own. We do have some grounds for this assertion – bear with me. Whitefriar Street Church in Dublin is the unlikely resting place for the relics of Saint Valentine. That’s right! While desperate men the world over rush to their nearest Garage fore-court to buy half-battered bunches of red roses in the hope that it will get them out of jail, the knowledge that there is an Irish connection to … Continue reading Saint Valentine Was Irish!
The Irish debt deal did not reduce the amount owed by the country. Ireland still owes in the region of 125BN Euro – a staggering figure that will take decades to pay off. The new debt deal merely allows part … Continue reading Debt Deal for Ireland: A Step in the Right Direction?
The Report by the Committee that was established to investigate the role that the Irish Government played in the abuses perpetuated in the notorious ‘Magdalene Laundries’ is to be published. In the decades that followed the creation of the Irish Free State in 1922 and the Republic in 1948 the Catholic Church had tremendous influence in Ireland. It is only since the 1970’s that this influence has declined. Over the last two decades the litany of abuse carried out in institutions by religious orders and sponsored by the State has been graphically exposed. One such institution was the ‘Magdalene Laundry’ … Continue reading Magdalene Laundries Abuses To Be Made Public
The recent attempts by the Irish Government to recruit new nurses into the profession at 80% of the usual starting wage has backfired. Nursing Unions have mounted a vocal campaign against the scheme which they regard as an insult to the work done by nursing staff on the front line of the health service. The Irish Health Service Executive (HSE) has been forced to extend the deadline for applications after interest in the jobs was reported as being very low. Should the HSE be forced to abandon the scheme all together it will be seen as a victory for the … Continue reading Nurses Set To Claim Victory In Showdown With Government