Workers’ Rights, Jobs and Enterprise
Labour Party Manifesto 2020

Working in partnership with trade unions and local businesses, Labour will enhance the economic role of local councils, to provide decent and sustainable local jobs. We will insist on good employment practices and environmental protection.

Local government provides the necessary building blocks for enterprise and job creation: good planning; roads; control of waste and recycling; permits and authorisation; and by implementing local economic plans. Good quality jobs are the best way to reduce poverty and to improve workers’ wages.

Local councils purchase a large amount of goods and services from the private sector, including major construction contracts. We want to see the full use of EU rules that permit social and environmental clauses to be put into contacts, to require: decent wages; a proportion of local employment; more apprenticeships; good environmental protection; and other gains for local communities.

Labour has a vision for Ireland’s economy post-Brexit, based on environmental sustainability and good quality jobs. Brexit has made it clear that Ireland’s exporters need to move beyond reliance on the UK market alone. We want stronger indigenous Irish enterprise and better linkages with multinationals and with enterprises across the EU. We also must move away from fossil fuels, while replacing jobs that are affected by this transition.

Labour will demand that all local councils provide decent pay and conditions to their employees and to anyone contracted to deliver goods or services

  • There needs to be much stronger social clauses in all local council contracts and procurement, with requirements for decent pay and conditions, paying the Living Wage as the minimum. Council employees and contracted employees must have the right to trade union recognition and collective bargaining

We will work with local councils to ensure that their economic plans are focused on creating sustainable jobs, especially in rural areas and disadvantaged urban areas

  • Labour councillors are extremely supportive of LoveLocal campaigns. We will support initiatives to ensure the viability of local towns and community shopping streets. There are many way we can do this such as making sure councils provide affordable parking, helping the establishment of local business associations and promoting farmers’ markets
  • There needs to be better and more affordable public transport links to local shops and services in towns, as an alternative out of town shopping centres. Public transport must be accessible to all who wish to use it
  • It’s time that public transport providers took their responsibility to local communities more seriously. There should be proper upkeep of transport shelters. Labour councillors will insist on disability-accessible bus stops and shelters, with correct timetables
  • We know that many businesses are running into difficulties with the levels of local council rates. We will review the effect of local council rates on the ability of local shops and services in order to allow local businesses to complete with online shopping

The rate at which the high-speed broadband is being rolled out in rural Ireland is far too slow. We will seek for local councils to advance the availability of broadband Internet in towns and hubs

  • We will improve roads and other transport infrastructure that are under local government control, and require harbour plans to be developed
  • We will encourage all towns to develop local Fair Trade initiatives and Living Wage initiatives
  • We’ll promote the development of Nightlife Commissioners in urban areas to support the development of the night economy while ensuring public safety and noise control is kept in check. Night Commissioners could explore ways of financially supporting late night venues that are not viable on a purely commercial basis, as well as ensuring evening activities are available for teenagers as a socialising option, such as night time sports

Childcare can be completely unaffordable for so many families. Local councils could and should have a greater role in the provision of affordable childcare facilities