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An EBS employee on the picket line today Julien Behal/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Union: We'll picket AIB too if striking EBS workers are not paid

However, Unite said it was hopeful the decision not to make a Christmas payment would be reversed.

A UNION REPRESENTING staff at EBS striking over the withholding of a Christmas payment has said it will extend the picket to AIB buildings if the payment is not made.

However, Unite claimed that the Department of Finance is re-examining the decision not to make the ’13th month’ payment, which staff say is a standard element of their salary and not a bonus.

It’s understood the payment of between €1,000 and €2,500 is not performance-related. The union claims that some senior management at the company are still receiving the payment.

However, the company has disputed this. It argues that the payment is a bonus – which the bank is obliged not to pay since it came under State ownership – and says management have not received any bonuses since 2008.

According to Unite, managers expressed sympathy with striking staff as they passed the picket line today. “We are told that this was a decision made by Department of Finance officials,” union officer Colm Quinlan said.

“This payment has been part of staff contracts for 45 years. It was paid in 2009 when reference was made in the annual accounts of the company to no bonuses having been paid.”

Regional secretary Jimmy Kelly said if the Minister for Finance does not intervene, the union will hold a meeting on January 11 and begin placing pickets outside AIB buildings.

More: EBS staff begin strike action over ’13th month’ payment>

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