Union mounts campaign against pension levy

Thursday 05 February 2009 22.13
Pensions - Levy was announced earlier this week
Pensions - Levy was announced earlier this week

Politicians are set to come under pressure from public servants facing a pensions' levy as the IMPACT trade union announced it is mounting a nationwide email and lobbying campaign against them on St Valentine’s day.

At a meeting in Dublin this morning attended by over 100 IMPACT representatives, the union's leadership urged members to notify their local TDs and councillors about their anger by email and by phone.

In addition, there is to be a mass lobby at local constituency offices on 14 February.

The move will turn up the political heat on this controversial issue - particularly ahead of the local and European elections in June.

IMPACT General Secretary Peter McLoone said that since the Government announced the levy two days ago, his union had received hundreds of emails and phone calls.

He said people were furious at the unfairness of the measure when bankers and property speculators who caused the economic crisis were being let off scot free.

As yet it is unclear whether the lobby campaign will attract support from other public service unions.

ASTI to support IMPACT campaign

The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland has said its 18,000 members would be happy to join IMPACT's campaign.

ASTI General Secretary John White said they were doing everything they could to lobby politicians on the levy.

Sources at other public sector unions did not rule out the possibility that their members might take part.

A number of unions are due to hold executive meetings in the coming days, and firm decisions on tactics to oppose the levy may be made at those meetings.

The Civil and Public Sevices Union, which represents around 10,000 lower paid civil servants, has an executive meeting on Monday.

It is understood that a ballot for industrial action over the levy will be on the agenda.