2015 CONFERENCE: ‘21st century labour relations. Setting the agenda for direct negotiations’
AGSI Shine a Light on Right to Direct Negotiations
37th Annual Delegate Conference The Knightsbrook Hotel, Trim, Co. Meath
30, 31 March & 1 April
The 2015 Annual Delegate Conference of the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors begins in Trim, Co. Meath today with AGSI’s right to direct pay negotiations taking centre stage. This year’s conference theme is ‘21st century labour relations. Setting the agenda for direct negotiations’ and AGSI will also present its own model of pay negotiations ahead of the forthcoming review and conclusion of the Haddington Road agreement.
Speaking from the Knightsbrook Hotel, General Secretary John Redmond says, “This year pay will be a dominant theme as a result of Government and ESRI announcements around the continual improvements in the economy. We also remind Government of their promises to end ‘emergency’ financial measures once the economy turned the corner, so to speak. Consequently, conference will hear members proposing motions calling for the reinstatement of pay lost through pay cuts and the introduction of new taxes such as the universal social charge and the public service pension levy.
“We are also giving prominence to the historic decision last June by the European Social Committee. That decision confirmed the Association’s assertion that the AGSI must be allowed to negotiate its pay directly. While it is unclear at present what process will operate into the future, the AGSI is sure of one thing; if there is central negotiations there will be a need to make provision for us to exercise the rights decided on by the European Social Committee in their finding against Ireland. We won’t be peripheral figures anymore. We will fully represent our members in any central negotiations process in the future.”
The AGSI will host a panel discussion later today comprising stakeholders and experts in labour relations. Panel members include Mr.Kieran Mulvey, CEO, Labour Relations Commission; Mr.Bill Roche, Professor of Industrial Relations and Human Resources, UCD; Mr. John Barrett, Executive Director HR and Personnel Development, An Garda Síochána and Mr.Terry Spence, Retired Chairman of the Police Federation of Northern Ireland. Their own General Secretary, John Redmond will represent the AGSI on the panel.
You will recall that the former Minister for Justice did not attend the AGSI conference last year, however the Association is delighted that the Minister for Justice and Equality Frances Fitzgerald will address the conference this year and will take to the stage at 11am on Wednesday morning. Meanwhile, Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan will address delegates tomorrow (Tuesday) afternoon. Both guests will take a small number of questions from delegates following their addresses to conference.
On Tuesday 31st at 12pm Dr. L.O. Stromberg from Sweden will address conference on the Tetra radio system and his findings regarding the safety concerns of using such equipment. Dr. Stromberg has carried out extensive research on this matter and will outline a synopsis of this to delegates.
On Wednesday 1st April at 10am, Mr. Mark Toland from the Garda Inspectorate will present an update on the latest work being carried out by the Inspectorate in An Garda Síochána.
Throughout Conference a total of 30 Motions will be up for debate and these will cover such issues as pay and conditions, investment in training, the roles and responsibilities of Sergeants and Inspectors, increasing force strength and policing methods and techniques.
The AGSI Annual Delegate Conference will be opened this afternoon at 4pm by President Tim Galvin and conference business continues until 1.00pm on Wednesday.
Joanne Sweeney-Burke, 087-6237373