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  • How Media Prejudices Have Poisoned Public Discourse
    fact that we have fewer Public Servants than most EU countries and that those who work in the Public Service have suffered two and in some cases three pay cuts it is evident that the sustained campaign in certain sections of the media designed to scapegoat those who provide public services has had some of the desired effect from their point of view Various contributors on line ventured the suggestion that the problem lay with Public Service pay rates in part presumably because Fintan O Toole refuses to join in the attacks on Public Servants as if attacking those who work in the Public Service was some sort of magic bullet to deal with our debt The fact that only 13 of Public Servants were affected by the Haddington Road pay cuts applied to those earning over 65 000 shows that er let me see 87 of Public Servants were earning less than that amount in 2013 This would suggest a distinct shortage of people in the Public Service leading millionaire lifestyles Or so one would think but apparently after six years of relentless bigotry directed at Public Servants the facts do not always matter One fact often cited is that Irish Public Servants average earnings are high by EU standards Actually Irish earnings generally are high by EU standards but then the cost of living in Ireland is higher than the EU average To place emphasis on Public Servants earnings in an EU comparison in isolation is a statistical nonsense as it involves comparing Irish salaries with those of say Bulgaria Romania Latvia Lithuania Estonia Poland Hungry and the Czech Republic Nobody would suggest seriously that the salaries available in those countries would be adequate for the cost of living in Ireland yet somehow the fact that Irish Public

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/how-media-prejudices-have-poisoned-public-discourse.429.html (2015-10-30)
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  • Blog: Building Disability Rights Work with African Trade Unions: the work of Disability Aid Abroad
    to the sterling support of Eugene Quinn and the PSEU and using the TUC ICTU Disability Champions programme we have assisted African trade unions and disability rights groups to build employment support programmes promote changes in legislation to protect and empower people with a disability advocate for change in support of people with a disability and deliver vital support and solidarity to people experiencing real need in extremely poor countries Through the very generous active and continuing support of PSEU DAA has been successful in working on trade union employment support programmes in 5 African countries Tanzania Uganda Rwanda Ethiopia and Zambia and disability has been included in trade union constitutions as a stand alone issue rather than as some tacked on minor issue under gender or other equality themes In Uganda for example NOTU the National Organisation of Trade Unions has included disability in all its negotiations for collective bargaining agreements CBAs which represents a first in Africa for such disability related trade union work In 2010 DAA partnered with the Tanzanian Union of Industrial and Commercial Operatives TUICO with the financial support of PSEU to launch a two year employment support programme TUICO General Secretary Boniface Nkakatisi offered valuable help in getting the project off the ground and 40 people with disabilities were placed in supportive employment At the same time more than 300 trade union officials trade union representatives and disability rights organisation staff were trained in equality issues with regard to people with disabilities workplace disability adaptation training and employment support requirements using the TUCs Disability Champions programme In Uganda the Lord s resistance Army was basically a terrorist organisation that caused mayhem over a large part of the north of the country In the chaos and disruption caused by the LRA sexual violence massively worsened the HIV AIDS pandemic in Uganda and DAA offered help to the Akwenyutu persons Living with HIV and AIDS Group We then became involved in 2012 with a pilot programme to help 20 women affected by HIV to become self employed in tailoring and food processing again with help from trade union partners in Ireland When a disastrous fire destroyed the MSTC training centre in 2013 the PSEU were to the fore among Irish trade unions in sending funds to help rebuild the centre In November 2013 as a result of the pioneering work in Tanzania we were invited by the ILO International Labour Organisation to support a workshop run by the Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions CETU in the provincial town of Adama Joan McCrory of IMPACT and Sean McGovern of Unite were key speakers along with Yazidi Baligasira of Uganda Again we worked closely with the Ethiopian Government with individual trade unions as well as with CETU and with disability rights organisations in Ethiopia We were instrumental in bringing to that workshop our colleague from Uganda Yazidi Baligasira to demonstrate much of his successful work in Uganda Yazidi had been trained by DAA in the Disability Champions perspective

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/blog-building-disability-rights-work-with-african-trade-unions-the-work-of-disability-aid-abroad.426.html (2015-10-30)
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  • Letter to the Irish Times re. Dept. Social protection article on 20 Jan
    Protection Plan Mortgage Arrangements Motor and Home Insurance Educational Support Scheme Health Insurance Advisory Service Hospital Saturday Fund Legal Services Membership Prize Draw Circulars Circulars 2015 Circulars 2014 Decentralisation Diversity Diversity Resources Publications Review Annual Report etc Union Rules Ictu Neri Newsletter About Executive Committee Videos Full Time Officials Annual Delegate Conference Membership Service Charter Info for Branches Justice for Colombia Putumayo Buenaventura Training Recruitment Toolkit PSEU Blog Latest News Agriculture Irish Lights Revenue Group Committee Sub Branches EC Members Standing Orders Committee Revenue Group Rules Contact Us Home The Public Service Executive Union represents Executive Grades in the Civil Service the wider Public Sector Search Letter to the Irish Times re Dept Social Protection Article on 20 Jan By Billy Hannigan Friday 23rd January 2015 0 comments Dear Sir Ronan Mc Greevy s report 20 January 2015 concerning the Department of Social Protection raises some interesting issues Of particular note is that it seems to extrapolate a view on the services of the Department based on just 35 sample cases The Department can speak for itself and presumably will do so The reality is that the Department processes 1 5 million claims each week so it would possibly be regarded as extraordinary if there were not some measure of complaint or dissatisfaction To our knowledge complaints greatly exceeded 35 cases as one would expect The vast bulk of customers of the Department have a very positive engagement with the Department s officials The Department has an appeals process to deal with circumstances where people are unhappy about decisions and a complaints process where people who are dissatisfied about the service they receive The serious customer service issues and alleged incidences of racism have been raised with the Department by this Union over an extended period In fact the Union

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/letter-to-the-irish-times-re-dept-social-protection-article-on-20-jan.422.html (2015-10-30)
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  • The TTIP of the Iceberg
    Seán Carabini Tuesday 20th January 2015 0 comments Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership TTIP negotiations top the list of things we should be talking about but aren t The TTIP talks are attempting to forge an economic agreement between the EU and the USA in order to make trade and investment easier between the two areas On the face of it it sounds bland enough But dig a little deeper and you ll find plenty of issues that raise questions First of all much of the talks have been held in secret We simply do not know enough about what is going on Thus it is not at all clear what areas are under consideration Last year the UK Trade Minister Lord Livingston admitted that items such as the privatisation of the NHS in the UK were on the table If this is the case what could it mean for other Public Services and utilities across the EU As a Public Service Trade Union we have obvious concerns Although it has not made headlines there is a vocal opposition to TTIP across both the EU and USA One of the main issues is the potential formation of a judicial arm of the agreement that would allow for an Investor State Dispute Settlement ISDS This could allow a corporation to sue a State that introduced a law that could harm real or perceived company profits While the ISDS is intended as a mechanism to keep dispute costs down a cautionary tale has emerged from Australia that has caused some disquiet An Australian Government plan to remove branding from tobacco product packages resulted in a big ISDS challenge from Philip Morris Opening the policy decisions of a State up to corporate scrutiny has the potential to cost taxpayers a lot of money

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/the-ttip-of-the-iceberg.417.html (2015-10-30)
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  • UFE: A Review of 2014 PSEU Involvement
    of 2014 Paul Moyer and Dermot Brown attended the biannual congress of the Union of Finance Personnel in Europe UFE in Brussels The PSEU is affiliated to UFE through the Revenue Group UFE represents 440 000 Revenue and Customs officials across Europe and has affiliates in every European country For an annual membership fee of 1 per member UFE provides the PSEU Revenue Group with a voice right at the heart of the European Commission and in a world where more and more of decisions of government are driven by Brussels it provides great value for our members UFE s structure is a presidium made up of an elected President and 6 Vice Presidents The day to day business of the organisation is dealt with through a secretariat in Berlin The President and Vice Presidents are elected every 4 years and the largest Union has an option to take an automatic vice presidency an option which it exercised again this year leaving an election for the remaining 5 posts This year the Irish delegation supported Lorna Murray the candidate from our sister union in the UK the PCS Apart from the fact that Lorna is an excellent and extremely capable union activist the PCS is under direct attack from the coalition government in the UK and it was a great moral boost for them to have their representative elected to such a prominent position The UFE congress heard updates from each of its affiliated unions The congress was dominated by the concerns of each union at the continued programme of austerity being pursued across Europe at the expense of workers Congress was of the opinion that austerity was not working and that there was a need for Governments to start spending again and to stimulate growth It was widely acknowledged

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/ufe-a-review-of-2014-pseu-involvement.415.html (2015-10-30)
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  • Christmas Letter from Ebola Workers in Liberia
    be a huge task that made enormous demands on them We met every week in each district and shared the stories needs and pain of the week After the initial training they handled their fears and were increasingly motivated to reach more and more villages never counting the cost of the hours they had to walk in the height of the rains They worked way beyond our expectations They sought out remote villages never visited by any other group MSF asked us to go to places they could not reach as they can only travel by car and therefore depend on navigable roads Our colleagues travel by public transport that is motorbike and they walked We the Sisters were humbled by our colleagues and their tireless dedication to do all they could for their people They educated people about Ebola they dug with the villagers more latrines they educated all about sanitation and safe drinking water They facilitated the opening of many pumps as people were told that the water had been poisoned They motivated people to carry sick people to hospital as many were afraid they would immediately be carried to a treatment center as in the height of Ebola every sickness was considered Ebola They documented pregnant women and the information was carried back to the main towns where we are members of the county health teams There we liaise with MSF Red Cross UNICEF WHO and multiple local NGOs Hence they made an invaluable contribution to the coordination effort to combat Ebola We have reached our initial target of keeping so called safe villages safe We work in villages that have been quarantined and under twenty one days observation We have documented survivors orphans and children living with only one parent We have traced families of survivors and we continue to monitor their situations It is time to light a candle in the darkness it is Christmas here in Lofa Our markets are opened Women are starting the trek to town to meet their friends and sell their goods They are walking with a smile on their faces and a spring in their step We are not shaking hands or hugging each other but we wave joyously and greet with laughter There is dancing and singing everywhere and we have begun to visit again and receive all as a guest and no one as a stranger However we are still careful and a little afraid of what might lurk in the darkness The lives of so many have been wiped out Whole families lost to Ebola An infant sucking at the breast of her dead mother survives and we ponder the pain of it all A survivor mother cares for her small child thinking that she can stay by his side so that he will not die alone A mother begs her only child to stay with her because she is so afraid of the pain he does and survives but is haunted by the sight of

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/christmas-letter-from-ebola-workers-in-liberia.412.html (2015-10-30)
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  • The Irish Civil Service in Numbers
    Service Hospital Saturday Fund Legal Services Membership Prize Draw Circulars Circulars 2015 Circulars 2014 Decentralisation Diversity Diversity Resources Publications Review Annual Report etc Union Rules Ictu Neri Newsletter About Executive Committee Videos Full Time Officials Annual Delegate Conference Membership Service Charter Info for Branches Justice for Colombia Putumayo Buenaventura Training Recruitment Toolkit PSEU Blog Latest News Agriculture Irish Lights Revenue Group Committee Sub Branches EC Members Standing Orders Committee Revenue Group Rules Contact Us Home The Public Service Executive Union represents Executive Grades in the Civil Service the wider Public Sector Search The Irish Civil Service in Numbers By Tom Geraghty Tuesday 6th January 2015 0 comments Sometimes re reading fusty old reports or plans can throw up interesting figures Going back over the Government s Civil Service Renewal Plan launched last October I came across the following interesting numbers 53 Bn the level of expenditure managed by the Civil Service in 2013 2 the size of the Civil Service as a proportion of the total national workforce 7 6 the size of the Civil Service per 1 000 in the population compared to 8 4 per 1 000 in 1994 2 1m the number of applications processed by staff

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/the-irish-civil-service-in-numbers.410.html (2015-10-30)
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  • PSEU Blog: Christmas Cards and Dáil Debates
    cards issued by his office over the preceding five years in the form of a tabular Statement Year Number Cost 1966 900 29 No charge for production 1967 910 24 No charge for production 1968 1500 380 1969 1900 324 1970 1850 300 Estimated postage not included One would be tempted to speculate at the possible reasons for the exponential rise in Christmas Card issue in 1967 perhaps a result of a diplomatic front that coincided with Ireland s heightened efforts at negotiating an entry into the EEC The issue if Christmas Cards was not without other controversies that would seem alien in Ireland of 2014 The censorship laws that were in place in Ireland in the 1930s led at one stage to a Parliamentary Question on the subject specifically concerning whether or not the State intended to interfere with cards arriving from Northern Ireland the UK or North America On this occasion however the Minister for the Co ordination of Defensive Measures Mr Aiken stated that So far as I am aware there is no restriction on the exchange of Christmas cards between the places mentioned in the Deputy s questions and so far as the censorship here is concerned none is contemplated Occasionally however the debates are tinged with a touch of Christmas pantomime Take this extract from a Dáil debate in November 1966 between Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries Charles Haughey and Deputy L Estrange Mr L Estrange asked the Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries a how many greeting cards were sent over his name for Christmas 1965 and or the new year to herd owners and other members of the agricultural community b the cost of each card including cost of envelopes and postage c the names of the centres throughout the country from which these

    Original URL path: http://www.pseu.ie/xxxx/pseu-blog-christmas-cards-and-d%c3%a1il-debates.407.html (2015-10-30)
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