Mandate Trade Union wrote to the Joint Committee putting pay to any notion that retail wage rates were the cause of the price differential between goods north of the border and the republic. We enclosed a copy of our “End Low Pay” report (click here to download a copy) which clearly shows that the majority of retail workers are lower paid and work part-time hours. If they are looking for scapegoats they would do better to look at those responsible for the cost of land, development, rents and profiteering. Below is the full text of the Mandate letter to the Joint Committee:
Following the recent discussions regarding the retail sector in the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Enterprise, Trade and Employment, I have enclosed a copy of Mandate trade union’s own research document entitled End Low Pay, published on Wednesday, 2 July 2008.
While some quarters have openly stated that employment costs in the retail sector in the Republic of Ireland are exorbitantly high, Mandate’s research on its data base of membership has shown the following:
The document shows that wages in the Republic of Ireland are not excessively high in comparison with other European countries. In fact, based on pay rates in the large multiple retail stores, the document also shows that:
While this is a challenging time for all sectors of the economy, and particularly the Irish retail sector, it is unfair on some of the lowest paid members of Irish society to be referenced as overpaid or a contributor to the price differential between goods in the Republic of Ireland and goods in Northern Ireland.
Mandate represents over 50,000 members working in the retail sector at this moment in time and we would gladly welcome the opportunity to address the Oireachtas Committee to relay the experience of workers within the sector.
We hope that you find the report informative and welcome any comment you may have on the findings.
For Mandate Trade Union