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Dublin: 7 °C Wednesday 8 April, 2020
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A strike by 999 workers today kicked off a month of industrial action

The workers say that they want to be paid a Living Wage.

Image: Shutterstock/chainarong06

Updated at 6.49 pm

EMERGENCY CALL OPERATORS in Navan will have gone strike today over over pay.

The strike action will last 12 hours and will kick off a month of further action as the workers seek to agitate to be paid a living wage.

A living wage consists of workers being paid a basic payment of €11.50 an hour.

This follows on from a previous strike last month.

After today’s action, workers at the emergency centres in Navan, Ballyshannon and Dublin will withdraw from performing any extra duties outside of their employment contracts.

This will take place from tomorrow until Friday 6 May.

Response

The companies involved in the provision of the emergency service – Conduit Global and BT – have both issued statements in relation to the strike action.

BT says that the emergency call centre remained open today with calls being answered as normal. The company says that this will continue to be the case if the dispute continues this month.

BT said that the strike action was “highly irresponsible, unnecessary and unjustified” and that the Communications Workers’ Union (CWU) who are overseeing the action had shown ”how little respect they have for an emergency service that is vital to the country and its citizens in times of crises.”

BT also question claims made by the CWU involving pay and previous disputes, saying that they had “consistently issued inaccurate information” and that workers were already paid a living wage.

Conduit Global said that it “strongly regrets” the action and that they are committed to “ongoing discussions” with staff to reach an agreement – also citing that staff were already paid a living wage.

However, highlighting the dispute, the CWU said that Conduit Global had turned down an invitation to negotiate at the Workplace Relations Commission and displayed “open contempt for their staff and the Irish State”.

Read: 999 workers vote in favour of industrial action in row over pay and ‘length of toilet breaks’

Read: 999 call centre company insists it will be business as usual tomorrow, despite workers’ strike

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Cormac Fitzgerald

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