Ongoing campaign to eliminate pay discrimination – an update   

By piofficer, Thursday, 2nd December 2021 | 0 comments


TUI remains wholly committed to ending the scandal of pay discrimination, which was unilaterally imposed by Government on those appointed since 1st January 2011 and continues to see teachers and lecturers paid on different pay scales for carrying out the same work.   

Significant progress has already been made in this regard, including the reinstatement of the value of the Honours Primary Degree Allowance to the post-2011 Common Basic scale and the ‘skipping’ of points 4 and 8 across the various ‘new entrant’ scales (and also point 12 for current post-2011 teachers), which allows members to progress up these scales more quickly.   

In October, TUI used the findings of the latest in a series of surveys carried out by the Union’s Principals and Deputy Principals’ Association (PDA) to publicly highlight the significant damage that pay discrimination has inflicted on the education system, particularly in terms of the teacher recruitment and retention crisis.   

What grades are still subject to pay discrimination?  

The following grades are still subject to pay discrimination, with separate scales for those appointed before and after 1st January 2011:  

  • Common Basic Scale (i.e. the scale for registered Post Primary teachers)   
  • Assistant Lecturer  
  • Youthreach Resource Person  
  • BTEI Adult Educator  
  • Adult Guidance Counsellor/Co-ordinator  
  • Adult Literacy Organiser and Community Education Facilitator.   

What is the next stage in the campaign against pay discrimination?  
Three pay increases apply over the period of the current Building Momentum Agreement. The first 1% (or €500, whichever was larger) increase was paid on 1st October 2021, and the third 1% (or €500) pay increase will be paid on 1st October 2022.   

The middle of the three pay increases, payable on 1st February 2022, is in financial terms the equivalent of a 1% general pay increase, which the Union could choose to have paid to all members. The Union also has the option of using the equivalent financial value of the increase to address specific, outstanding issues through a sectoral bargaining process. Our position is clear: consistent with TUI policy set by Annual Congress and our commitment to the ongoing campaign, this funding must be used to address the ongoing scandal of pay discrimination across the various grades through the sectoral bargaining process.   

Will the outcome of this sectoral bargaining process completely eliminate pay discrimination?  

The Union will seek to eliminate as much of the remaining pay discrimination as the allocated funding allows.   

There are varying degrees of pay discrimination, depending on the particular grade. For example, at Post Primary level, where pay discrimination is most pronounced, the sectoral bargaining process would allow reinstatement of the PME allowance (currently valued at €1,314) for post-2011 entrants, which would significantly reduce the existing pay differential between those appointed pre- and post-2011. Over the course of a 40-year-career, the value of this re-instatement to the individual would be €52,560. In addition to this, TUI believes that the process may allow the Union to deal with other aspects of pay discrimination, for example by addressing the front loading of pay reductions in the early years of a teaching career and by the restoration of certain allowances which were abolished during the years of austerity.  

In terms of the other grades (Assistant Lecturer, Youthreach Resource Person, BTEI Adult Educator, Adult Guidance Counsellor/Co-ordinator, Adult Literacy Organiser and Community Education Facilitator), the Union will seek to eliminate all or as much as is possible of the remaining pay differentials between the pre- and post-2011 scales.    

The TUI membership can be assured that every possible option will be fully investigated in the process. The final proposal will make use of every cent of the monies available to move forward in restoring equal pay for equal work.   

In some instances, where there is no recruitment grade and no outstanding claim or adjudication, the middle 1% under Building Momentum will be taken as a straightforward pay increase for the relevant members.   

Once again, we reiterate that TUI’s campaign will continue until pay discrimination has been completely eliminated.   

We will update members on further developments as they arise.   

Yours sincerely,   

Martin Marjoram, President, TUI
Michael Gillespie, General Secretary, TUI  

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