Crane operators will not be diverted from legitimate demands
Resolution of dispute in employers’ hands
August 17th: Unite, which represents over 90% of crane operators in Ireland, today accused the Construction Industry Federation of a “transparent attempt to pit worker against worker” following what the union termed an “orchestrated campaign” by CIF members threatening workers with protective notice citing the ongoing crane dispute. Pointing out that the CIF withdrew from a Workplace Relations Commission process in June, the union reiterated its call for the CIF to engage meaningfully with workers in an effort to resolve the dispute.
Commenting, Unite Regional Officer Tom Fitzgerald said:
“The decision by certain construction companies to threaten workers with protective notice today, citing the ongoing crane dispute, is a transparent attempt to pit worker against worker.
“Crane operators are seeking a separate collective agreement with rates which reflect their levels of skill and responsibility: no more and no less.
“It is regrettable that the CIF chose to withdraw from the WRC process in June, thus triggering the current industrial action against its members. Rather than returning to the table to negotiate an agreement, they have apparently chosen to orchestrate a campaign of division which is not in the interests of CIF member companies.
“The construction sector is thriving. Between 2012 and 2015, profits in the sector nearly trebled to €1.5 billion, while profits per person employed more than doubled to €13,800 – higher than in Germany, Sweden or France. Against that background, it is particularly disingenuous for CIF member companies to suggest that the proposed SEO for the construction sector will resolve all workers’ pay concerns, especially given that it does not provide a legal basis for existing travel arrangements.
“The campaign of division apparently being orchestrated by the CIF is not in the best interests of CIF members or the construction sector as a whole”, Tom Fitzgerald concluded.