INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
MANOR PRODUCE LIMITED
(REPRESENTED BY THE IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Pierce
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Shift premium.
2. The Company collects and processes red and washed offal for supply to the pet food industry. It employs 24 operatives and 3 drivers, all of whom are hourly paid.
The Company has traditionally operated a 3-shift system as follows:-
7.00 a.m. - 3.00 p.m.
3.00 p.m. - 11.00 p.m.
11.00 p.m. - 7.00 a.m.
The shift allowance payable was 18% , 18% and 33% respectively. In April, 1999, due to changes within the meat industry, the Company decided to change to a 2-shift cycle as follows:-
Monday 10.00 a.m. - 5.00 p.m. 9.00 p.m. - 4.00 a.m.
Tuesday to Friday 7.00 a.m. - 3.00 p.m. 8.00 p.m. - 4.00 a.m.
The proposed premiums for the 2-shifts are 18% for the early shift and 28% for the late shift. The Union rejected the Company's proposals, believing that the proposed late shift should continue to pay 33%. Following a meeting, the Company offered to increase the premium for the late shift, depending on the finishing times, e.g. the 8.00 p.m. - 4.00 a.m. shift would pay 30%, but again this was rejected by the Union. The Company has continued to pay 33% for the late shift while the issue is in dispute.
The dispute was referred to the Labour Relations Commission, and a conciliation conference took place on the 13th of July, 1999. As there was no agreement, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 10th of August, 1999, in accordance
with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 8th of September, 1999, in Clonmel.
3. 1. The workers did not ask to be put on a 2-shift cycle. This has resulted in them working night shifts 1:2 rather than 1:3 as in the previous 3-shift cycle. This has caused added disruption to domestic life and they should be adequately rewarded.
2. The Company's argument that there is, on average, no loss is not the issue. Night shift has always paid 33% and should continue to do so. It is a long standing arrangement at the Company.
4. 1. The workers enjoy favourable terms and conditions, something which is acknowledged by the Union.
2. Because of a change in the Company's supply base, the Company had no choice but to change to a 2-shift cycle. If business improves, it is hoped to revert to a 3-shift cycle by October, 1999.
3. Because the workers are doing night shift 1:2 rather than 1:3, their wages will increase at 33%. Even at 28% for night shift, their wages would have, on average, been the same as pre-April, 1999.
Having considered the submissions of the parties, the Court recommends that the interim arrangement whereby 33% is paid for the night shift should continue for the duration of this shift season. The Court understands that this shift season is due to end in a matter of weeks.
The Court is aware that this Company is constantly facing many challenges, and its terms of employment are generous, therefore, in order to settle this particular issue, the Court recommends as follows:-
- if, at any time in the future, a 2-shift system with a similar night shift is introduced, the Court recommends the payment of 31% premium for the night shift.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
17th September, 1999______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.