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Whitley Council gets back to work

The Isle of Man's public sector pay body has resumed its work after a damaging split between the chairmen of the employers' and employees' sides.

The row earlier this year led to the resignation of employers' side chairman John Houghton.

He has been replaced by Dudley Butt, MLC, and the council has just held its first meeting since last October.

Mr Butt and his employees' side counterpart Angus Kelly have issued a joint statement, saying recent events will not be allowed to get in the way of progress, shaping pay and conditions for 2,500 manual workers.

Mr Butt says there will be differences but there is now a commitment to good relationships.

He told Manx Radio he doesn't believe the pay negotiating body will always be a combative arena:

"It could be potentially, but I found last week it wasn't that combative.

"There are two sides, but we all are together as one council, so we do actually share the responsibility for doing the best we can for the Manx people and their work and pay and conditions.

"I'm sure there will be problems in the future, because there always are in these things, but at the moment things are going really well.

"It may be a honeymoon period, but I really enjoyed the meeting last week, and Mr Kelly and Mr Moffatt and co were very supportive of our position, in terms of government and in terms of being employers."

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