After the storm

The Croke Park deal should ensure that Irish public sector workers are spared any further pay cuts. Perhaps worth reflecting, after a painful couple of years, that according to the OECD, Irish state workers are still among the best rewarded in the world. The Sunday Business Post report on a survey by Forfas and the National Competitiveness Council.

The figures for 2010 show that Irish nurses are paid the fourth-highest average salary ($67,000) in the OECD.

The starting salary for primary teachers in Ireland this year is 15 per cent higher than that OECD average, while the top salary for teachers is 33 per cent higher.

These figures take account of the public sector pay cuts, but not the 7.5 per cent pension levy, as many other countries also require pension contributions.

The survey shows that grocery costs remain expensive in Ireland but Irish employees have a higher purchasing power than many of their international competitors.

That means that they must work less time to buy branded consumer goods, such as a McDonald’s Big Mac (15 minutes work) or an iPod Nano (ten hours work).The average time working required among other rich countries is 22 minutes for a Big Mac and 17 hours for an iPod Nano.

Despite criticism from many quarters, with the deficit bloated by the Anglo bailout set to hit 20% this year, it may be fair to say that the Irish Trade Union leadership played a blinder!

, , ,

  • The Raven

    Maybe someone could clairfy for me, regarding the salary for the nurses, is this just your average ward nurse? Or does it assume an average of many different grades? Are there some higher grades, albeit with less people in it, which skew this figure? And what is turnover like for nurses in ROI, in comparison, say to NI? Is it a much more stable sector than elsewhere? Do nurses in ROI take on duties which only junior doctors and above do in, say, NI?

    With regard to teachers, and notwithstanding the arguments about what makes a teacher “good” or “bad”, but having done a mere week’s workshadowing in a school in London last year – you couldn’t pay me double to do that job.

    I suppose my point, unlearned and assumptive as it is, is are these two examples overpaid? Or are we not paying ours enough?

    Just a thought.

  • Framer

    Try working night shift in food processing factory for a quarter the wages to compare.

  • Alan Maskey

    The Raven: You ask good questions. As you may know, a group of Christian Brothers’ educated Catholics, togehter with a few crackpot Prots and James Connolly, went out to overturn Crown Catholic rule in 1916. The result: free state leeches: the Irish Taoiseach is the world’s second highest paid politician (after the Singaporeran tsar), the judiciary are the world’s second highest paid and so on. All public sectors are leeching. A blinder by the ITUM yes, but one with longer term ramifications.
    Teaching is probably a bad barometer as the same Christian Brothers’ educated people who rocked the world in 1916 also set up the INTO: Dev and Thomas McDonagh were founding members. Read the book Unlikely Revolutionaries to see the role the INTO has played from 1916 down to the present.

  • DC
  • The Raven

    I have done. Petrol stations, bars, what have you.

    But I had some really good teachers who ensured that I limited that work to post school college years.

  • paxtime

    This report is tosh. It was compiled from information supplied by foras which is an arm of government and oecd which advises cowan. not unbiased observers one imagines. The idea that these variable figures quoted at the end of the article hold any water is laughable. Did they for example use the cost of a Big Mac on the day that a cut-price meal was offered or what. The entire story is planted rubbish.