Community Workers Are There For Us – People Before Profit Are Here For Them!

Community Workers in Galway protesting in Eyre Square during SIPTU Community Sector's 24-hour work stoppage

Workers in community and care organisations who are SIPTU members were on a 24-hour work stoppage and protested together in Galway (pictured), Waterford, and other counties today. We met them on their pickets and protests in in Waterford, Dublin and Galway to stand in solidarity with them and encourage them to keep up their fight.

The list of employers in the SIPTU leaflet included these names: ‘Rehab Group, Western Care, Pieta House, Local Employment Services, Ability West, Inclusion Ireland, Local Community Partnerships, Job Clubs, LEADER projects and the Irish Wheelchair Association’

Irish Wheelchair Association was on a very noticeable nationwide strike yesterday and People Before Profit’s Paul Murphy and Richard Boyd Barrett and Local Representative Bernard Mulvany visited with activists from the local branch bringing buns donuts and drinks. These hard working people are woefully underpaid. Root-and-branch change is needed on how workers in this sector are treated.

Our leaflet today for Community sectors said this:

Well done to the Community Sector Workers in SIPTU who are striking for proper funding to keep the vital service they provide going. 

For a lot of people this is their first strike. We support you and we know that you are doing this not just for you but because you understand how important community work. It’s vital work. It has to be properly funded.

Vital services to families and vulnerable individuals often in difficult times and circumstances: that’s what our community workers provide. The Irish Wheelchair Association strike illustrated that perfectly yesterday. 

Of course community service work should be paid properly. It should be a given- but successive governments have said NO to them when they have said YES to everything asked of them. We’re standing with them today as they call time on government neglect. 

We need these services. We value the care and the community AND THE WORKERS who provide these services. It matters that our communities are properly looked after. We stand with the workers.

We’re asking everyone to call on the government to stop pretending they have no responsibility to increase grants for pay to Section 39 workers so they can get the proper pay increases they have waited for since 2008, when government called on all of us to work together to implement cuts and austerity. Communities have soaked up the debt and the harm from the financial crisis- and we are now in a new crisis around the cost of living and inflation.

Community services are what people lean on in these tough times. This is not the time to cut on community workers. They need proper pay increases and People Before Profit are standing  with them 100%. Let’s take care of Community Sector Workers.

Proper funding now. Support the Strikes. Support the Workers.