SIPTU has called on the Government to immediately end the effective veto over the progressing of Joint Labour Committees (JLCs) which employers groups are using to consign tens of thousands of workers to poverty. SIPTU Services Division Organiser, John King, said: “For nearly 12 months workers have had to endure the Restaurants Association of Ireland and Irish Hotels Federation subverting Government policy and refusing to engage in the JLC process. This process merely seeks to set fair wages and conditions for mostly low paid workers in order to ensure that their work pays enough for them to support themselves and their families.“These employer organisations have refused to accept Government policy in this area and engage with workers’ representatives despite businesses in both sectors in general seeing a major increase in profits in recent months. Occupancy rates in hotels have increased significantly as have average profit levels per room while in the restaurant sector companies such as Supermacs, McDonalds and many others have posted multi-million euro profits. However, workers have not seen any benefit from the improved business conditions.”He added: “What is particularly galling about these employers refusing to accept Government policy is that they have also received massive state support in recent years. This has included the targeted reduction of VAT rates, investment in tourism projects such as the Gathering and the Wild Atlantic Way, as well as the continued supplementing of their employees incomes by the State because they refuse to pay them sufficient wages.“The Government must end this disgraceful situation and bring these renegade organisations to heel. Their effective veto must be ended. If action is not taken swiftly to end this intolerable state of affairs, SIPTU members will be forced to consider every course of action at their disposal to ensure fairness is restored to these industries.”