SIPTU members in Irish Rail have balloted by a ratio of 2-1 to support official industrial action in the event that management unilaterally implements changes to their conditions of employment. SIPTU members had recently voted by 51% to 49% against a Labour Court recommendation which involved pay cuts, redundancies and restructuring at the company. In a ballot counted today, members voted by 66% to 34% in favour of industrial action but also voted 64% to 36% against strike action. According to SIPTU Organiser, Paul Cullen, industrial action will only occur if management acts provocatively by changing members’ conditions of employment without agreement. “It is clear to us that members are prepared if necessary to protect their conditions of employment. However, we are also of the view that that we should all try to avoid a damaging dispute which has the potential to disrupt the travelling public. We met with the senior management of the company this afternoon and we suggested that this is a time for calm reflection and cool heads. We also suggested the parties should consider a process that was successfully used in resolving the Dublin Bus restructuring whereby two independent facilitators assisted the management and unions in resolving their issues in a short time frame,” Paul Cullen said. Irish Rail management is considering the SIPTU initiative and has confirmed that it will respond shortly to the proposal.