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Statement from Minister with Responsibility for Defence, Paul Kehoe TD, regarding PDFORRA and the Lansdowne Road Agreement

The Minister with Responsibility for Defence, Mr Paul Kehoe T.D., today (Saturday 25th March 2017) welcomed confirmation by PDFORRA, the Representative Association for enlisted personnel, that following a period of consultation with their membership that they propose to now enter into the Lansdowne Road Agreement.

“There has been significant engagement over recent months between officials in my Department, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and PDFORRA in respect of a number of technical issues around pay and conditions which were finally resolved following talks facilitated by the Workplace Relations Commission. It is important to recognise that PDFORRA members have at all times complied with the provisions of the various public service pay agreements. I am glad to see that through this announcement PDFORRA members will now secure the benefits and protections offered through the Lansdowne Road Agreement. The Government is committed to the implementation of the Lansdowne Road Agreement as the most appropriate way to make progress on pay and reform of our public services”, the Minister said.

A number of issues were raised by PDFORRA in the context of their agreement to the Lansdowne Road Agreement. These related to the interpretation and application of savings measures arising from previous agreements. At no time had PDFORRA repudiated their commitments under these agreements and, indeed they remained fully compliant with all elements of the agreement, including the modernisation and change agenda for the Defence Forces and the delivery of the required pay savings.

“Over the course of the economic crisis, the Defence Forces have implemented a significant change agenda to deliver more efficient and effective military capability and capacity. The members of PDFORRA have been to the forefront in this modernisation and transformation programme and I note their positive statement today that they remain committed to the implementation of the modernisation and change agenda for the Defence Forces. I am therefore very glad to see their agreement to now enter into the Lansdowne Road Agreement which will ensure that in return for those commitments, their members can secure the benefits of public service pay increases and the protections which come from participation in the agreement”.

The Defence Forces have recently expanded their overseas commitments and they continue to meet their essential defence domestic security requirements.

“As we emerge from the economic crisis, I am committed to rebuilding and reinvigorating our Defence Forces going forward, and the decision announced today by PDFORRA is an important step in contributing to that process”.