INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
TEAM AER LINGUS
- AND -
AER LINGUS CRAFT GROUP OF UNIONS
Chairman: Ms Owens
Employer Member: Mr Pierce
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Loss of earnings due to alteration in shift working.
2. The dispute involves a claim by the Union for compensation for the loss of shift pay on behalf of three Fitters employed in the Internal Services Business Unit of the Company. The Fitters were informed in 1994 that permanent shift-working was to cease following the implementation of the re-organisation plan which was based on the "Cahill Plan" and Labour Court Recommendation LCR14552.
The Company claims that the re-organisation plan was a "Survival Plan" to bring the Company back to profitability. It states that staff in the Line Maintenance Department was reduced by approximately 100 people. Many of these workers were redeployed/transferred to other areas of reduced shift working and day working and no compensation was paid. Furthermore, there is a Company/Union agreement which covers the area of transfers from day work to shift working and vice versa where no compensation is provided for.
The Union claims that since the three Fitters were employed on permanent shift-working they should be compensated for the loss of shift earnings.
As no agreement was possible between the parties the dispute was referred to the Labour Court under Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. The Court investigated the dispute on the 12th September, 1997.
3. 1. The Fitters concerned have suffered a substantial reduction in pay as a result of losing their shift premia and should be compensated accordingly.
2. The workers have accumulated sixty years of shift-working between them.
3. The Company should notify the Union when it decides to alter its members working conditions of employment.
4. The Fitters should be compensated at 2.5 times the annual gross shift-pay.
5. The Company has made similar compensation awards in the past where there was loss of shift-pay or overtime to members.
4. 1. Any concession of this claim would have serious knock-on effects across all categories of workers in the Company.
2. The Company was restructured in 1994 under the "Cahill Plan" and Labour Court Recommendation LCR14552. It was a "Survival Plan" to reduce costs.
3. Following the re-organisation of work in the Company many workers were redeployed/transferred without receiving compensation.
4. The provisions of the Craft Workers' Agreement - Article 11.5 refers, covers the area of compensation in relation to staff transferred from shift working to day working.
Having considered the evidence submitted the Court has concluded that the provisions of Article 11.5 of the Craft Workers' Agreement apply to this case.
The Court accordingly does not find in favour of the Union's claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
19th September, 1997______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Larry Wisely, Court Secretary.