Wednesday, 18 November 2015

High Level Forum brings together workers and decision-makers

A new High Level Forum for the Community Sector will bring together workers’ representatives directly with officials from government departments and agencies. 

SIPTU and Impact negotiators proposed the establishment of the Forum during the talks leading up to the Lansdowne Road agreement. The creation of this Forum is a significant breakthrough for workers in the Community Sector. 

It has been agreed that government departments and statutory agencies’ officials will meet on an ongoing basis in the High Level Forum to:

• Ensure the effective exchange of information on relevant
issues in the Sector
• Receive updates on public expenditure levels in the sector
• Receive regular information updates on service delivery
and best outcomes in the Sector
• Address with full consideration issues such as pensions and terms and conditions of employment related to employment in the Sector

The High Level Forum will be convened by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and will meet on a quarterly basis.

SIPTU Vice President, Gene Mealy, a lead negotiator in the talks establishing the new High Level Forum, said: “This Forum is probably the most important initiative secured for workers in the sector in recent years. It overcomes a major difficulty experienced by unions in resolving any serious industrial relations issues affecting their members. While recourse to the Labour Court has resulted in
supportive recommendations some government departments and agencies have failed to honour them.

“The new High Level Forum for the sector provides a formal mechanism to enable fruitful engagement and negotiated solutions for union members.”

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