INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 13(9), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
CITY OF DUBLIN VEC
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr Flood
Employer Member: Mr Brennan
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Appeal against Rights Commissioner's Recommendation DC 104/96.
2. The worker commenced employment with CDVEC as a temporary general operative on the 27th October, 1978. He transferred to Crumlin College on 5th March, 1979. The worker was subsequently re-located to an annex of the College called "Fort Osman" which was beside the main building. As he was the key holder for Fort Osman he received the appropriate allowance for that duty.
In September, 1987 the College withdrew from Fort Osman and the worker was transferred back to the main building. The key holder's allowance should have ceased at this point but due to an oversight the allowance continued to be paid.
In February, 1995 the College discovered the error and promptly ceased to pay the key holders allowance to the worker. The worker objected to the allowance being discontinued.
The dispute was referred to the Conciliation Service of the Labour Relations Commission. However, no agreement was possible. The matter was subsequently referred to a Right Commissioner for investigation. The Rights Commissioner investigated the dispute on the 13th January, 1997 and in his recommendation DC104/96 recommended as follows;
"Whilst the claimant's colleague in Crumlin College is the recipient of key money on a personal basis, it is, in my view, not a "like with like" situation in that the criteria forsuch payment, related to quite different circumstances to those of the worker.
I am also satisfied that the College as requested made every possible effort to accommodate him with a lateral transfer, in order to allow him retain the allowance, and therefore the allegationthat he was victimised or unfairly treated is in my opinion simply notjustified.
I am convinced, therefore, that there are no real grounds for the restoration and retention of the payment of the key allowance to the worker, and I must therefore recommend that his claim in that respect, fails.
However, in that he may have had some expectation of the continuance of thepayment after February, 1995, I further recommend, in that regard, that the City of Dublin, VEC, entirely without prejudice or precedent, pay the worker, an ex-gratia lump sum of £500, which he should accept in full and final settlement of his claim."
(The worker was named in the Rights Commissioner's Recommendation.)
3. 1. Management has acknowledged that the worker is a hard working and trustworthy employee with an excellent work record.
2. The key allowance should be maintained by the worker on a "person to holder basis".
3. Other employees at the College are in receipt of key money who are not key holders.
4. The worker is on a low basic rate of pay and the loss of the key allowance will adversely affect his financial position.
4. 1. The worker claims that another employee is in receipt of the key allowance but is not a key holder. This employee was transferred to Crumlin College on the closure of another school. It is the policy of the Department of Education to preserve terms and conditions of employment in such circumstances.
2. The College agreed at conciliation to seek alternative positions for the worker to allow him retain the allowance. However, the worker declined the offer to transfer to alternative employment.
3. The College has waived its right to recoup the overpayment to the worker.
4. The worker has already received compensation through the overpayment of approximately £1500 and is not entitled to any further compensation.
The Court having considered all the information before it finds no reason to change the Rights Commissioner's Recommendation.
The Court therefore upholds the Right Commissioner's Recommendation and rejects the appeal.
The Court so decides.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
3rd June, 1997______________________
Enquiries concerning this Decision should be addressed to Larry Wisely, Court Secretary.