Teachers' Union of Ireland vows to continue campaign “until pay discrimination is finally eliminated”
19,000 TUI members across the country went on strike on Tuesday.
The Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) has vowed to continue its campaign against what it describes as “the continuing injustice of pay discrimination” until the union is satisfied that it has been eliminated.
Days out from the General Election on Saturday, 19,000 TUI members from second level schools, colleges, centres of further and adult education and Institutes of Technology/Technological University Dublin went on strike on Tuesday in the latest protest at a two-tier pay system introduced in 2011.
— Teachers' Union Ire. (@TUIunion) February 4, 2020
At second level, a teacher employed after 1 February 2012 earns 14% less on initial appointment and 10% less over the first 10 years of their career than teachers hired before that date, amounting to approximately €50,000 overall.
Over 400 schools and education centres were closed on Tuesday as a result of the strike action and the union took the opportunity to send a message to all political parties and election candidates that there will be no “honeymoon period” for a new government and that it expects immediate action to be taken on the issue.
“19,000 striking TUI members are sending out an unequivocal message today to all politicians who are members of parties that aspire to being a part of the next Government – our campaign will continue until the discriminatory two-tier pay system, unilaterally imposed in 2011, is finally abolished,” said TUI President Seamus Lahart.
“What is a complete injustice under one Government will continue to be a complete injustice under a new Government, and we expect immediate action on its elimination. There will be no ‘honeymoon period’.”
The strike comes on the back of a vote last autumn in which 92% of TUI members voted in favour of industrial action. In November, the union signalled the intention of its members to strike in February.
The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland (ASTI), meanwhile, staged a solidarity protest outside the Department of Education in Dublin on Tuesday.
A ballot for strike action on the same issue is due to be taken amongst ASTI members, the result of which will be announced on 20 March.
— ASTI (@astiunion) February 4, 2020
Main image via Twitter/Teachers' Union Ire.