INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION & SCIENCE
- AND -
IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr McHenry
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Dispute regarding security of employment and rate of pay (LCR16227).
2. The dispute before the Court concerns a claim by the Union on behalf of one of its members regarding security of employment and rate of pay.
The worker concerned is employed as the National Youth Information Co-Ordinator, presently with the Department of Education and Science and previously with the National Youth Council of Ireland. She is on secondment from Dublin Corporation where she was employed as a Senior Librarian.
In July, 1999, the Minister for State at the Department decided to re-locate the Youth Information Resource Unit back to the National Youth Council of Ireland. The Union claims that the worker should not have to move with the Unit but be made a permanent employee of the Department. The Department argues that she has to re-locate with the Unit.
The dispute was referred to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 20 (1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 14th of December, 1999. The Union agreed to be bound by the Court's Recommendation.
3. 1. It is the Union's view that the worker is being victimised by the Department for asking her Union to represent her regarding pay and conditions.
2. She has been humiliated and undermined by the Department. She has been treated badly in relation to this issue as proper negotiations did not take place.
3. The Union is seeking that the worker concerned become a permanent employee of the Department at a rate of pay equivalent to the grade of Assistant Principal with full incremental credit and pension entitlements.
4. 1. The worker concerned had been aware of the possible re-location of the Youth Information Unit prior to the Minister of State's decision on the matter. Her Union was notified immediately after the decision.
2. The Department has attempted to negotiate the worker's pay and conditions but did not get a positive response from the Union.
3. The worker is on secondment from Dublin Corporation for a period of up to seven years which expires in April 2003. At the end of this period the Department presumes that she will return to the Corporation. There is no contract of employment between the Department and the worker concerned.
Having carefully considered the submissions of the parties, the Court is satisfied that the claimant was seconded to the Department to act as National Youth Information Co-Ordinator on contract for a period of seven years commencing in January, 1996. In the Court's view the claimant has a legitimate expectation that the terms of that commitment would be honoured.
The Court, therefore, recommends that the claimant be retained in her current post within the Department for the full period of her secondment unless alternative arrangements are agreed.
In its earlier recommendation in relation to the pay claim made on behalf of the claimant, the Court envisaged that negotiations on this claim would take place at conciliation before it would be referred back to the Court for a definitive recommendation. Due largely to the uncertainty surrounding the proposed transfer of the claimant, these negotiations did not take place.
The Court remains of the view that conciliation should take place on the pay claim before it is investigated by the Court. The Court recommends that on acceptance of this recommendation and the claimant's position within the Department being confirmed, the parties should immediately refer this claim to the Labour Relations Commission for conciliation.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
18th January, 2000______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.