March 10th: “Unite represents members who are employed by local authorities but working for Irish Water under Service Level Agreements, and we also represent members directly employed by Irish Water/Ervia.
“The jobs of those employed by local authorities would not be affected by the abolition of Irish Water and the scrapping of charges – regardless of whether Irish Water is replaced by a single national water and sanitation board, as is the proposal of the Right2Water campaign to which Unite is affiliated, or whether our water services are returned to local authorities. It is also a priority to ensure that the jobs, terms and conditions of those directly employed by Irish Water/Ervia are protected. If Irish Water is replaced by a single national water and sanitation board, those directly employed by Irish Water/Ervia would be transferred to the new board with no diminution in their terms and conditions.
“It is Unite’s view that the establishment of Irish Water, and introduction of water charges, was designed as a prelude to privatisation, which would inevitably place our members’ jobs, terms and conditions under a permanent threat and attack.
“Unite will continue working to protect the jobs, terms and conditions of our members employed in the water services – whether currently employed by local authorities and seconded to Irish Water, or directly employed by Irish Water/Ervia. We will also continue working on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of people who are demanding the abolition of water charges as an austerity tax too far. Abolition of water charges is not only the position adopted by the unions affiliated to Right2Water, but also the position adopted by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions at their biennial conference last year”.
- Richie Browne, Regional Coordinating Officer, Unite the Union