Speech made by NIPSA member Michael Dobbins at Protest for Equal Pay at Stormont 18 November 2103
We stand here today in discontent and defiance against our equal pay injustice. Everyday our life’s are at threat in work but yet we have had our environmental allowance taken off us, we have not been given our 1% pay increase and we continue to be declined access to this equal pay settlement. When it was thought all hope was lost giving the court result in March, we as members rose up and took our fight to Stormont, to our MLA’s. We let them know that we were not going to take this as a defeat, it was just simply a signal to press onwards.
Chanter: When I say stand up, you say fight back! Chanter: Stand up. Crowd: Fight Back!
We have lobbied our MLA’s in collective action. We have received responses back in support of us. Many people have said we are being used as a political football. There has also comments made trying to union bust our union. Let’s send this message to our MLA’s;
Chanter: When I say, lies and tricks will not divide, you say Workers standing side by side!
Chanter: lies and tricks will not divide.
Crowd: Workers standing side by side!
Mr Simon Hamilton our Finance Minister has stated that he is considering our case and that he will get back to us. That was in September, we are still waiting.
We have had to endure a long struggle, a long fight, a long campaign. We have suffered knock backs but we have got up, brushed it off and came back louder and bigger than ever.
We will keep moving forward until we get a resolution to this injustice. We will continue to escalate this collective action until we receive what is rightly ours. We are not trying to steal or rob from anybody; we just want what is rightly ours.
Chanter: What do we want? Crowd: Equal Pay! Chanter: when do we want it? Crowd: NOW!