Peter Hadden, Socialist Party, speaking at solidarity meeting in support of Linamar Unite convenor Rob Williams in Belfast 26th May 2009
Civil Service: We want equal pay now!
THE LOWEST paid staff in the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) are angry and frustrated that more than a year after the Assembly First Minister Peter Robinson publicly admitted that they had been discriminated against for decades, they are still waiting for the money they are owed. Some continue to be underpaid by as much as £5,000 per year.
Their fury has led them to take matters into their own hands and a template letter to MLAs has spread like wildfire. They have organised meetings with political parties and one of those directly led to a debate in the Assembly and the passing of a motion which called on Nigel Dodds to ensure that staff receive the money they are owed within three months. The DUP amendment which sought to remove the three month deadline was withdrawn when it was clear there was no justification for the delay.
Tory budget kicks can down the road
The main reasons for this are two-fold. On the one hand, because of the still devastating situation in which most working people still find themselves. In the midst of a third lockdown, with rising unemployment, millions are relying on furlough, Universal Credit and other schemes to make ends meet. For these millions, the run up to Sunak’s budget brought constant reminders of the potential cliff-edge facing them and their families.