14 December 2005

Irish Ferries dispute ends after talks breakthrough


14/12/2005 - 07:00:45

The bitter dispute over Irish Ferries' controversial outsourcing plan has ended following a breakthrough in talks at the Labour Relations Commission overnight.

After a full night of negotiations, the company agreed to pay the Irish minimum wage to all workers regardless of which flag it sails under.

It has also agreed to protect the existing terms and conditions of any current workers who wish to remain with the firm rather than accepting a redundancy offer.

Irish Ferries' employees are due to begin voting on the new agreement today, with ferry services expected to resume sometime in the afternoon.

The company's seafaring staff have effectively been on strike for three weeks in protest at the plan to replace them with cheaper labour from eastern Europe.

Irish Ferries had been planning to pay these new workers less than half the minimum wage in an effort to cut costs.

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