Strict enforcement of new construction industry SEO needed

Image: SIPTU.

SIPTU has called for the strict enforcement of the terms of a new Sectoral Employment Order (SEO) for the construction industry which comes into effect today and will see pay rises and extra protections for workers.

The terms of the SEO come into effect today, with workers receiving the first phase of the pay rises included in the SEO with a 2.7% increase. The second phase will come into effect on 1 October 2020, with another 2.7% rise.

“In addition,” said SIPTU Sector Organiser, John Regan, “the working week is now legally enshrined in the SEO at 39-hours with overtime premium rates applying after 39 hours. The Construction Workers Pension Scheme contribution will increase in line with pay increases which, for the first time, bring it in line with pension schemes in other employment sectors.

“The SEO gives a right for construction workers to being in a pension scheme and receive all other benefits it contains. However, some 30,000 PAYE workers in the construction sector are not in the CWPS or receiving the other benefits of the SEO. The main reason these workers will not benefit from the terms of the SEO is because they are not members of the union. The reason for this is that many workers fear they will be black listed or dismissed for becoming a union member. Many other workers are excluded because they have been forced by scrupulous employers into bogus self-employment.”

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