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Industrial disputes have cost 8,324 working days so far this year

That’s more than double the number for the same period last year.

Image: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

THE FIRST HALF of 2014 saw 8,324 working days lost to industrial disputes, with 8,014 of those lost between April and June alone.

That’s more than double the number for the same quarter last year, when 3,417 days were shed.

According to CSO figures, six new industrial disputes began in Q2 of 2014, and one carried over from Q1.

In total, those seven disputes involved 1,681 workers and seven companies.

The economic sector which accounted for the vast majority of those lost days was industry, with 7,116 out of the 8,014 in total.

Last year, industrial action cost 14,965 days, with 11,924 workers from 12 firms involved.

In 2012, some 8,486 days were lost, an increase on 2011, when disputes cost 3,695 days.

ISME, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, yesterday called on the government to ban strikes involving public utilities and essential services.

The statement came just four days before the first of five planned strikes by Irish Rail workers, which look set to cause travel chaos on both All-Ireland final days.

Read: SIPTU escalates plans for All-Ireland train strikes>

Timeline: What’s happened so far in the SIPTU vs Greyhound ‘lockout’>

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Dan MacGuill

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