NIC-ICTU Leaders Welcome Corbyn Pledges on Brexit, Workers’ Rights and Social Dialogue.
24 May 2018
The leadership of the trade union movement in Northern Ireland held discussions with the Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn this afternoon, on matters essential for all working people – Brexit, low pay, decent work and the need for a forum for social dialogue which can develop policies for the benefit of the local economy.
Mr Corbyn was accompanied by his Shadow NI Secretary Tony Lloyd and Labour MPs Steve Pound and Tonia Antoniazzi, and met the following trade union leaders:
Owen Reidy (ICTU Assistant General Secretary; Patricia McKeown (Unison & past-President ICTU; Gerry Murphy (INTO & Chair of NIC-ICTU); Alison Millar (NIPSA, & vice-President ICTU); Jackie Pollock (Unite & former Chair of NIC-ICTU)
Speaking after the discussion, Congress Assistant General Secretary Owen Reidy said: “We have had a warm and friendly meeting with Jeremy and briefed him on some of the most pressing economic problems facing working people in Northern Ireland, in particular low pay and insecure work, and the social impact of austerity for public services coupled with a decline in quality jobs in the private sector.
"Jeremy and his team back our initiative for a new forum for social dialogue which we have been discussing with all local parties in recent months and gaining widespread support for a Better Work and Better Lives for working people,” he said.
NIC-ICTU chair Gerry Murphy added: “We welcomed the comments made by Jeremy this morning at Queen’s University. Like Labour the trade unions will not support any Brexit deal that includes the return of a hard border to this island. We also fully agree that there must be no effective border created in the Irish Sea either. Our responsibility is to our members, their prosperity and their rights. We will not stand for any shoddy and undemocratic deal which will hurt working families for the sake of unity among Tories who have no mandate or support from this region.”