Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Trade Unions’ Category

Moments of crisis: Aer Lingus seeks millions from SIPTU over strike threat

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Moments of crisis: Aer Lingus seeks millions from SIPTU over strike threat

Sam Nolan, veteran socialist and trade unionist and long-standing Secretary of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions has post this personal message on Facebook today (14th March). https://www.facebook.com/sam.nolan.391 I have commented on it below.

“Moments of crisis happen at certain stages of history. Such a moment is now upon the trade union movement. The threatened move by AER LINGUS to sue SIPTU for financial damages for a strike that did not take place is such a moment. This move is a threat to the future activity of every trade union in the country. There must be a sharp militant response from CONGRESS affiliated unions as well as a legal challenge. Labour in government must decide which class it represents.”

My comment:

There has been surprising little reaction from the unions, the left and even the blogosphere (or my sector of it) to the announcement that Aer Lingus was suing SIPTU over a strike that did not take place. http://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/aer-lingus-seeks-millions-from-siptu-over-strike-threat-1.1725298

The action by Aer Lingus, for damages, breach of contract and, in at least one report I heard, conspiracy, has all the marks of the pre-1906 open season on trade unions. As the day wore on the need for someone authoritative in the labour movement to take a stand and make a clarion call was ever more pressing. It is no accident that it is Sam Nolan that has stepped forward and it is fitting and fortunate that it is he who has. Not only has he stood in the front line for decades but he has the respect and authority in the trade union movement to be taken seriously and to be heeded and followed.

When Sam Nolan says it – “Moments of crisis happen at certain stages of history. Such a moment is now upon the trade union movement” – you know it is not stock left rhetoric. It is not some hamburger merchant that is suing, it is the national airline, backed by the airport authority and also by the biggest anti-union outfit on the continent, the William Martin Murphy of 2014.

It is time for SIPTU and ICTU to fight before there is nothing left to fight for – or fight with. And fight with street mobilisation and industrial action, not just in the courts or with press statements which omit that the Labour Party is in government and, in this case, that the government is on the board of the union-busting company. I hope unions, union committees and Branch and Sector Committees can take up his call without delay and that, if there is a delay, the Dublin Council of Trade Unions can repeat its recurrent role of being the focus and the catalyst on crises facing the labour movement.

Des Derwin

http://siptuactivist.wordpress.com/2014/03/14/moments-of-crisis-aer-lingus-seeks-millions-from-siptu-over-strike-threat/

Written by tomasoflatharta

March 15, 2014 at 12:25 pm

May Day march Dublin 2013: Unfinished Business

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Mayday1

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April 22, 2013 at 1:35 pm

Croke Park Deal croaks

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April 16, 2013 at 11:40 pm

Rally of Education Public Servants against Croke Park 2: Saturday 9th March, 12:00, Gresham Hotel Dublin

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All public servants welcome

Vote “NO” to Croke Park 2. Defend Education. Defend Public Services.

Colleagues,

A grass-roots rally of public servants in the education sector will take place in the Gresham Hotel Dublin at 12:00 on this Saturday 9th March 2013.

The focuses of the rally will be on:

  • securing a “NO” vote to Croke Park 2 in as many unions as possible
  • the need for unity amongst all public servants in the face of the on-going attacks on us, and
  • the way forward to better representation and mobilisation of public servants
  • sending a message to our unions, to ICTU and to the Government that this so-called agreement will not be accepted

This rally is not called by the Executive of any union and has absolutely nothing to do with ICTU, which clearly no longer represents public servants at all.

Please attend and advertise the rally to all other public servants you know, both within the Education Sector and outside it: All public servants are very welcome to come along.

The intention is to show our own union leadership and ICTU that in the absence of representation from them, we can and will mobilise ourselves.

We urge you to attend.

Regards,

Martin Marjoram (TUI Branch Chair IT Tallaght)
Michael Carr (TUI Branch Chair Dublin Colleges)
Gregor Kerr (INTO District 14)
Maria Parsons (TUI Branch Chair IADT Dun Laoghaire)
Claus Derenda (TUI Branch Chair IT Carlow)
Gerald Mills (IFUT UCD)
Richard Crowley (TUI Branch Chair Dundalk IT)

Thomas Dooley (TUI Acting Branch Secretary Dundalk IT)
Andrew Phelan (ASTI)
Paddy Healy (TUI Dublin Retired Members Association)
Kevin Farrell (TUI Executive, Area 15)
Eddie Conlon (TUI Executive, Area 16)
Niall Smyth (INTO)
Paul Farrell (TUI IT Tallaght)
Ronan Callanan (TUI Dublin City PP)

Written by tomasoflatharta

March 4, 2013 at 1:46 pm

Meeting to organise opposition to Croke Park 2, Dublin, 27th February 2013

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From Paddy Healy

A meeting to organise resistance to the changes to pay and conditions under Croke Park 2 will be held in Teachers Club, Parnell Square, on Wednesday next, Feb 27, at 8pm.

The meeting has been called by 5 branches of TUI to organise resistance to Croke Park 2 within the Education Sector.

The organisers have agreed to facilitate discussion among all public sector trade union activists and pensioners (pensions are to be reduced under the Deal)  on organisation to oppose the Deal

Please Come along at this time of great danger for public servants and for the trade union movement generally.

Written by tomasoflatharta

February 26, 2013 at 5:29 pm

Good Days for Financial Parasites, Friends of the Fine Gael-Labour Government

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In case you were wondering where the €427 million to be ‘saved’ by the cuts in welfare spending in 2014 (€390 million in 2013) is going (childrens allowance, respite care grant, PRSI increases for low earners, etc) or where the household and ‘property’ tax money is going – here’s a snapshot of today’s activities: payments to bondholders on Dec 17.
Check out who’s paying out, by hitting ‘A good day’ below.
http://cedarlounge.wordpress.com/2012/12/17/a-good-day/
BoI (Bank of Ireland) and EBS (now merged with AIB). They are paying ‘Senior Unsecured’ bondholders – rich people who bought bonds from the banks with no associated collateral to guarantee repayment – and therefore a higher rate of interest. The banks used the money raised from these bond sales to fund the developers – and together they drove up land and house prices. Since the crash, these bonds have been trading on the bond markets for anything up to a 50% discount – but the banks are paying out full listed price to current bondholders.
There again, let’s not think the bankers are losing too much sleep over giving a euro for a bond bought for 50 cent: the money they’re using to pay the bondholders is state / your money (the state is the payer of last resort, because it can raise the money by taxing you and me), or money borrowed from the ECB with the state / you standing as guarantor. And the state, Labour and Fine Gael, the EU and the ECB, are all insisting that full payment is made on what are otherwise almost worthless bonds.
As to who decides these matters, you might think that the state would act in the interests of citizens. It does indeed do that – but for the wealthy citizens. So when you hear that well-hackneyed phrase ‘protecting the most vulnerable’, have a think about how vulnerable those bondholders must be – coz they’re sure getting a lot of protecting.
The state put €5,000 million into BoI since 2008 (when it was bankrupt and nobody else would give any money) and got 50% of its shares in return. 35% of those shares were sold earlier in the year by Michael Noonan to billionaire Wilbur Ross for €1,000 million. In doing so the government agreed to give him a little prezzie of €2,500 million: he only paid €1,000 million for shares the state paid €3,500 million to the bank for. The state still owns 15% of the bank and has a ‘public interest director’ on the board. But he hasn’t met the minister for finance for over a year (he’s been busy working out the bonus payments for the other directors).
That €2,500 million discount to a billionaire is an interesting contrast to the respite grant cut to the full-time carers of people with disabilities – at a ‘saving’ to the state of €26 million.
As to AIB-EBS, the state owns 99.9% of it. And put in over €20,000 million. So the bondholders are getting the whole whack from state ‘injections’ of capital; or from borrowings made with the state as guarantor. The Irish banks have been ‘recapitalised’ (given money or had borrowings guaranteed by the state) with €17,400 million set aside for next year’s bond payments alone. And more again for the following years.
Did I hear you say ‘child benefit’?
The €500 million Labour and Fine Gael hope to get from ye through the ‘property’ tax in 2014 will help out with the €9,100 million interest payments on the money borrowed by the state to fund the banks and their debts to speculating bondholders.
So as you can see, your money’s going to good use – sure wouldn’t ye only waste it on food or drink or keeping warm if it didn’t go to ensure payment to those ‘most vulnerable’: bondholders – the people who are really being protected. Check out the Indo a while back for the wages and expenses of Ireland’s bank directors. And as you may have heard, the Financial Regulator (state employee) has told the banks that they must increase their charges and interest rates to get back into profit asap. So you’ll be helping the ‘most vulnerable’ in multiple ways: cuts, taxes, and bank charges. Mother Teresa couldn’t do more!
If all this has you feeling a bit irritated, put Saturday, Feb 9, 2013, in your diary – it’s the day of protest being convened by ICTU against the austerity required to keep the rich well provided with Prada bags (running out the door of Brown Thomas at €900 a go). And tell your friends. If we don’t have a big turnout in Feb – and another big demo before the €3,060 million ‘promissory note’ payment for Anglo on March 31, we can kiss goodbye to any hope of stopping the home tax – or repudiating debts which are not ours (or our children’s).
Brendan Young

DCTU: Budget Day Demonstration

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Dublin Council of Trade Unions,

Mandela House,

44, Lower Gardiner Street, Dublin, 1

 

Dublin Council of Trade Unions

 

‘Budget Day Demonstration’

 

 

As a first follow up to the marvellous show of unity and determination on Saturday 24th November the Dublin Council of Trade Unions is asking all those who came out to reconvene on Budget Day, Wednesday 5th December, at the Dáil at 4 pm.

 

Come along with your banners.

 

Mick O’Reilly

President

Tom Simpson

Vice President

Sam Nolan

Secretary

 

Contact: 087 2101370 or dctuforum@gmail.com or the above address.

Dublin Council of Trade Unions – ‘Budget Day Demonstration’ – Wednesday 5th December, at the Dáil at 4 pm

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Web Link :

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dublin-Council-of-Trade-Unions/115330285145261?ref=ts&fref=ts

 

Dublin Council of Trade Unions

 

Budget Day Demonstration’

 

 

30th November 2012

 

Dear Colleagues,

 

As a first follow up to the marvelous show of unity and determination on Saturday 24th November the Dublin Council of Trade Unions is asking all those who came out to reconvene on Budget Day, Wednesday 5th December, at the Dáil at 4 pm.

 

Please alert your members to the event and come along with your banners.

 

 

 

Yours Sincerely,

 

Mick O’Reilly

President

Tom Simpson

Vice President

Sam Nolan

Secretary

 

Contact: 087 2101370 or dctuforum@gmail.com or the above address.

ULA: Demonstrate! 1pm Sat 24 Nov, Parnell Square, Dublin

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tomasoflatharta:

This post and the comments indicate that the November 24 Pre-Budget Anti-Austerity March has wide support ; See also http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dublin-Council-of-Trade-Unions/115330285145261?fref=ts

Originally posted on The Cedar Lounge Revolution:

View original

Time to Make our Voices Heard, Say Organisers of November 24th Anti-Austerity March

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Time to Make our Voices Heard, Say Organisers of November 24th Anti-Austerity March

The groups organising the Anti-Austerity March on November 24th today (Monday, November 19th) held a joint press conference.

Chairing the press conference, Tommy McKearney, speaking on behalf of the Campaign Against Household and Water Taxes, said:

“The CAH&WT is urging all campaign members and supporters to take part in the national pre-budget anti-austerity demonstration in Dublin on Saturday 24th November. With the OECD reporting Ireland’s unemployment rate as the fourth highest among developed countries and clear evidence of household incomes falling, December’s budget must not cause still more damage through further cut-backs. The CAH&WT message is straight-forward : The Coalition must be told loud and clear on 24th November that it was not elected to impoverish the people“, Mr McKearney said.

Speaking on behalf of the Communities Against Cuts campaign, Lynda Scully said:

“This year’s budget will cut €1.7 billion from public expenditure. If the last five budgets are anything to go by, this will be disproportionately targeted at the poorest and most disadvantaged communities, devastating the community sector by removing local services and jobs. If this is allowed to happen we will see closures throughout the country in youth services, child-care, elder care, training and education projects, local and community development and drugs projects. This march is for the people to stand up and let the government know the last five budgets have not worked, and nor will this one”.

John Bissett of the Spectacle of Defiance and Hope said:

“On Saturday November 24th community groups from all over Dublin and beyond will be joining the Spectacle of Defiance and Hope to articulate their anger at the continuation of austerity measures which will be further exacerbated in the upcoming Budget”.

Michael O’Reilly of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions said:

“After five austerity budgets, 300,000 of our fellow citizens are unemployed and one million people are living in deprivation. Yet on December 5th the Government is set to introduce the sixth austerity budget since the onset of the crisis. That is why we are asking people to join us on November 24th and send a clear message to Government Buildings in advance of the Budget: We need to change direction and start focussing on growth and investment rather than destructive cuts”.

ENDS

For further information contact:

 

John Bissett (Spectacle of Defiance and Hope) 087-9889132

David Connolly (Communities Against Cuts) 087-9073573

Gregor Kerr (Campaign Against Household and Water Taxes) 086-1501151

Alex Klemm (DCTU) 087-2606139

 

The November 24th Anti-Austerity March will take place at 1 pm on Saturday, November 24th, starting from Parnell Square

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