• Workers in Ireland not passive supporters of austerity
• Labour will seal electoral meltdown if they attempt to push through pay cuts
Speaking following the ‘No’ vote on the Croke Park II deal (which included attacks on public sector wages and conditions demanded by the Troika) Paul Murphy MEP commented:
“I warmly welcome the decisive No votes from SIPTU (Irelands biggest union), the INMO (nurses and midwives) and the INTO (teachers) announced this afternoon, which alongside the No votes from several other unions have killed off Croke Park II and has knocked the government and the troika onto the ropes. I congratulate those union activists and leaders who campaigned against this disastrous deal.
“Internationally the government and the troika like to give the impression that workers in Ireland are passive supporters of austerity policies. This vote and the large protest in Dublin against the hated property tax last Saturday have dramatically exposed this lie
“This vote is a key turning point, public sector workers have had enough of austerity, which has meant pay cuts and the destruction of the services they deliver. It shows that they are not prepared to take any more and are prepared to stand up to the bullying from the government, the troika, and the media together with strong pressure from the conservative trade union leaders.
“Any attempt to legislate for pay cuts must be met by effective industrial action to defeat this weakened government. The Labour Party claims to be the party for working class people and the trade union movement. This lie has been well and truly exposed with their viscous austerity policies. Should Labour attempt to force through pay cuts for public sector workers, it should be made absolutely clear to them that it will seal their fate and guarantee electoral meltdown in local and European elections in 2014.
“This year marks the 100th anniversary of the 1913 Lockout. Then, workers rose up against attacks on their living standards and discarded the old conservative trade union leadership in the process. If the union leaders fail to mobilise now against austerity policies they should face a similar fate as their pre-1913 counterparts.”