News Update: 023/15

To: Each Branch Secretary – Attention All Members
Date: 18th December 2015
News Update: 023/15

Colleagues,

  1. Civil Service Renewal Plan – SO/EO talks

The Department of Public Expenditure & Reform (DPER) today confirmed to Head Office that it is seeking the opening of talks early in the New Year on the integration of  the SO and EO grades. DPER say senior management in the Department and other Departments have come to the decision to address this matter now as provided for under the Civil Service Renewal Plan. Annual Conferences of the CPSU have clearly mandated the union to seek to protect and enhance the SO grade and seek to have all SO vacancies filled while also seeking to secure promotion for existing SO grade members. No details of the DPER proposals have been given to the union at this point. Clearly we will attend the talks and represent all our members. We will advise of the DPER plans as they are made known to us. 

  1. Social Protection Dispute – Intreo Waterford

The General Secretary, Financial Secretary and local representatives from the Waterford Local SP/Intreo Office met with Social Protection senior management led by Assistant Secretary Patricia Murphy this morning. The meeting was called after the union had advised management locally that its members who felt unsafe in the glassless reception area would seek the protection of the recent ballot on industrial action if forced to work in the area which they deem to place their health and safety at unacceptable risk. No breakthrough was possible this morning but both sides agreed to seek an urgent meeting of the LRA Oversight Body. This is expected in early January and in the interim industrial action will not be put into effect. 

  1. Disciplinary Code

The Executive Committee sanctioned final approval of a new Disciplinary Code yesterday, but made it conditional on Union Negotiators finalising some key issues which are still outstanding at the end of the negotiating process. Discussions will continue with DPER next week but the matter will not be settled most likely until after Christmas. The Executive Committee were not however prepared to approve a draft Underperformance Policy which has been under negotiation at the same time as the Disciplinary Code, primarily because the warnings under the Underperformance Policy are the same as warnings under the Disciplinary Code. The Union will return to this matter too in the New Year.

  1. PMDS

 The Executive Committee has also approved, at its meeting yesterday, proposals on a new rating system for PMDS. The old rating system will be replaced with  a process which will find a member either satisfactory or unsatisfactory. Within this we have built in protections to ensure that where extenuating or mitigating circumstances arise which affect the ability of a member to achieve their goals that this will be taken into account. There will also be an external appeal process introduced for the first time for PMDS, which will act as a buffer against poor management actions.

  1. Meeting with Garda Inspectorate

The Unions met with the Garda Inspectorate this week to discuss their latest important report which has very significant implications for civilianisation with An Garda Siochana.  Specifically the report makes proposals to return anywhere between 1500 and 2000 Garda to policing work from office based roles. The engagement and debate with the Inspectorate was very useful and we are preparing a full report for our National Committee which will be convened in early January to consider this and other matters. The report will issue to all members too.

  1. Garda Time and Attendance System

The Union is receiving requests from Dublin Garda Stations this week for meetings in relation to the introduction of the system and concerns that are arising. We have received the exact same mail from various locations this week and it is worrying as it contains inaccurate information, in particular that this system is being introduced without negotiation. This is just not true, the matter was fully discussed and signed off by all unions, including ours, going back to 2012. In any event we are making plans to meet members to discuss further, including a meeting in Pearse Street Garda Station next Monday 21st.

 

Eoin Ronayne

General Secretary