Industrial action by employees in community and care organisations will escalate unless the government addresses their demands, SIPTU has warned.
A protest by community workers took place in Eyre Square last Wednesday as part of pay dispute by community workers.
The protests in Galway, Cork, and Dublin were part of the Valuing Community campaign, which is supported by the ICTU, SIPTU, Fórsa and the INMO.
This followed a day of industrial action in Galway and elsewhere by members of the Irish Wheelchair Association.
SIPTU Public Administration and Community Division Organiser, Adrian Kane, said, “Many care and community sector workers have not had a pay rise in 14 years.”
“They are struggling to make ends meet in the face of a worsening cost of living crisis while also seeking to maintain services for some of our most vulnerable citizens.”
He said that the campaign of industrial action which began last week will not end until employees are treated with “the respect they deserve” by the government, which he said is ignoring their demands.
“Their demands are simple and the Government must engage with their unions and provide the organisations that employ them with funding so they can have a pay rise.”
“Without this not only do they suffer but the very existence of the services they provide is under threat due to workers leaving the sector and an inability to recruit new staff.”
“These workers have been forced to take action in their own interests and of those who depend on their services.”
He said that if the government continues to refuse to engage with unions, then the industrial action will “widen and intensify” over the summer and autumn.
“These workers will neither stay silent nor beg for justice any longer.”