INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
SUPER VALU, KILCULLEN
- AND -
Chairman: Ms Owens
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Mr Rorke
1. Alleged unfair dismissal.
2. The dispute concerns a worker who was employed at Super Valu, Kilcullen as a delicatessen assistant, from May until December, 1997. She claims that, having sustained an injury to her back and shoulder, she advised her employer that she could no longer carry out any lifting duties, as was required in the delicatessen. Subsequently, she claims, she was told that there would be work for her until Christmas Eve only and, having left at that time, was not offered any alternative work by her employer, who took on other staff after Christmas. The employer denies having dismissed the worker whom, he claims, left the employment of her own accord. The matter was the subject of investigation by the Labour Court, in Athy, on the 28th of April, 1998 in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990.
3. 1. Having informed her employer that she could not carry out lifting duties, the worker was advised that she could not work in that area of the store if she was not able to perform those duties. She was advised that there was no work for her in any other area of the store.
2. As it was the busy week before Christmas the worker was given work in the newsagents but was informed that there would be no work for her after Christmas Eve. On leaving the store on Christmas Eve she was told that she would be contacted if any vacancies arose. She was not contacted, however, and in the meantime additional staff were taken on, one of whom was employed in the newsagents.
4. 1. The worker informed her employer that, having been on sick-leave for a day or two, she wished to "jack in" the job, there and then.
2. As it was close to Christmas, the worker was asked to remain on in a temporary capacity in the newsagents until Christmas Eve, an arrangement that she accepted. The worker did not ask for alternative work and although another employee was taken on subsequently, she was not employed in the newsagents.
The Court is satisfied that this dispute arose due to lack of clear communication between the parties. This may have arisen due to the time of the year, when the store was exceptionally busy.
The Court recommends that the employer offer the claimant a job when the next suitable vacancy occurs and pay her a sum of £150.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
18th May, 1998______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Michael Keegan, Court Secretary.