25 September 2023

IRELAND: Defence payrise a one-off

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The Government of Ireland says it will not pass on increases in allowances for the Defence Forces to other groups of State employees.

The Cabinet agreed to increase the military service allowance paid to virtually all members of the Defence Forces by 10 per cent and to reverse cuts of 10 per cent made to other payments in 2013.

A number of other outstanding pay adjudications for some military personnel will also be paid out.

The Government said the increase to the military service allowance, which ranges from about €40 (A$64) to more than €120 (A$190) per week, would boost pay for the majority of personnel by between €602 (A$970) and €675 (A$1,090) per annum.

The increased allowances will be paid in addition to increases under the existing Public Service pay deal and are aimed at tackling serious staff retention issues in the Defence Forces, which were identified by the Public Service Pay Commission.

Some 60 per cent of serving enlisted personnel and non-commissioned officers told the Commission they intended to leave the Defence Forces in the next two years.

The Commission warned that essential services provided by the Air Corps were in jeopardy due to a shortage of pilots.

General Secretary of the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland, Kieran Christie said his union would now be redoubling its efforts to ensure that allowances for teachers were restored.

The Teachers’ Union of Ireland said pay equality for teachers was mathematically impossible without reinstatement of an allowance withdrawn from those who entered the profession after February 2012.

Minister for Public Expenditure, Paschal Donohoe ruled out extending similar pay improvements to those offered to military personnel to others in the Public Service.

“The current wage agreement is clear,” Mr Donohoe said.

He said any recommendations from the Public Service Pay Commission would not give rise to further claims across other sectors.

“I expect this to be honoured,” Mr Donohoe said.

Dublin, 6 July 2019

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