A HIGHLY paid teacher union leader who earns up to €158,000 a year has not
taken a pay cut, although thousands of his members have had their salaries
The 15,800 rank-and-file teachers who are members
of the Teachers Union of Ireland (TUI) have
endured a 14pc pay cut in the past two years.
But its general secretary Peter McMenamin’s pay remains the same — even
though it is linked to a grade in the civil service that has also been hit by a
Mr McMenamin refused to comment last night on why he is still on the old
pre-pay-cut salary level — and refused to reveal exactly what he is paid.
His union would only say that his pay scale ranges from €131,748 to
The pay of officials in the teaching and lecturing unions is funded through
subscriptions from members.
These subscriptions are usually deducted from salaries at source, by the
Department of Education and Skills.
The revelation about Mr McMenamin’s pay comes as more than half the 23 public
sector union leaders refused to disclose how much they were being paid.
But it has emerged that none of the other senior
TUI officials — among the unions most resistant to public sector reforms
outlined in the Croke Park
Agreement — have taken a pay cut.
In stark contrast, senior members of the INTO teaching union have taken a
INTO general secretary Sheila Nunan, whose pay is also based on the same
assistant secretary grade as Mr McMenamin’s, revealed she had taken a pay cut.
However, her potential earnings remain around €153,885.
The TUI, which only recently backed the Croke Park deal, defended its
decision not to cut the pay of officials at head office in the wake of the last
Government’s pension levy and pay cut.
The wages of more than 300,000 public servants were slashed by an average
TUI president Bernie Ruane said: “Both TUI’s annual congress last year and
the union’s executive committee decided that head office staff would not have
their pay cut.
“The union opposes pay cuts for anybody and accordingly refused to make cuts
to the salaries of its own staff.”
The motion put forward by delegates at the TUI conference, which was
defeated, called for pay cuts to ensure membership and employees of the union
were “treated equally”.
Many unions who would not reveal pay details have been most resistant to the
Croke Park agreement, including university teacher union IFUT, which has still
not backed the deal.
Teacher unions, including the TUI, only recently agreed to work extra hours
that were due to commence at the start of the last school year.
Others, including the AHCPS, would not give pay figures and would only refer
to the public sector pay grades their leaders’ wages are linked to.
General secretary of the Public Service Executive Union, Tom Geraghty, whose
union represents 11,250 mid-ranking civil servants, said he regarded questions
about his pay “intrusive prurience”.
The Garda Representative Association said that its leader’s salary was
General secretary of the largest dedicated public sector union, IMPACT, Shay
Cody, would not give details of his current pay but did reveal he had taken a
His spokesperson said his pay was no longer linked to the pay of the Cork
county manager, which stood at €171,313 in 2009.
He said Mr Cody had taken a voluntary pay cut and waived a portion of his
salary on appointment, and also declined a public sector pay award.
Construction union BATU, which has up to 500 public sector members, said
officials’ pay had dropped by 40pc in the last two years but would not say what
general secretary Paddy O’Shaughnessy’s pay was.
However, other unions were more open about their leaders’ wages.
They included SIPTU, where staff took a 5pc pay
cut while national officers took a 10pc pay cut, bringing general president Jack
O’Connor‘s basic pay down to €112,000 a year.
The survey also reveals huge discrepancies in what unions pay their
For example, the head of the small trade union, OPATSI, is paid around
€45,000 — less than a third of what some teachers’ representatives get.
Jimmy Kelly, head of UNITE, which has 60,000 public and private sector
members, earns €60,000 a year, while PDFORRA leader, Gerry Rooney, with 8,000
members, earns €96,000.
Meanwhile, employer body IBEC refused to give details of its director general
Danny McCoy’s pay.
– Anne-Marie Walsh Industry Correspondent
A touch of “I’m all right Jack”!
“We do not and cannot accept the principal that incompetence justifies
This only exposes to cosy number these top Union Bosses have
the talk the Talk the talk but do not walk the walk! They are living in another
world and are just as out of touch as their political pals with the masses . This is why we are not seeing mass demonstrations on the streets these guys are quite happy with
the way things are and have gone native with the politicians and are keeping
the masses off the streets
We need a new clean out of the top Unions they are not representing
the real needs of the workers!
The current union bosses can be relied to tow the line just like their champagne socialists
in the Labour party.