SIPTU representatives presented leaflets outlining why their members in Edenderry Power Ltd (EPL), Edenderry, County Offaly, will be conducting a 24-hour work stoppage on Monday, 27th March, to the members of the board of Bord na Móna at the semi-state company’s headquarters in Newbridge, County Kildare, today (Thursday, 23rd March). SIPTU Organiser, John Regan, said: “SIPTU members in EPL will conduct a 24-hour work stoppage at the energy generation plant on 27th March, beginning at 7.30 a.m. At a general meeting of SIPTU members in EPL, last night, regret was expressed that this strike will happen as the workers have no other option following the failure of management to meaningfully engage at any time on the issues in dispute. “This dispute results from management at the Bord na Móna (BNM) subsidiary refusing to accept that a collective bargaining agreement signed in November 2013 covers our members’ right to have their basic pay increases negotiated by SIPTU representatives. “Leaflets detailing the issues in dispute were presented to members of the board of BNM as they entered a meeting in Newbridge today. The issues highlighted to the board members include the fact that the EPL workers have not received a pay increase since 2007 and that their annual salary is €15,000 less than others doing similar work at other power stations around the country.” Regan added: “The management of EPL is claiming the only pay adjustment it can provide to workers is under personal terms. This is in direct conflict with the collective agreement signed by SIPTU and EPL management. After 22 months of engagement at the Workplace Relations Commission, management decided to contest this collective agreement by claiming that SIPTU representatives have no right to negotiate pay on behalf of the workers. This position is not accepted by our members in the plant.” SIPTU members in EPL voted by a five to one majority for strike action in a ballot counted on 23rd February.