INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
- AND -
TECHNICAL, ENGINEERING AND ELECTRICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr Flood
Employer Member: Mr McHenry
Worker Member: Mr. Somers
1. Increase in pay.
2. The Company was formed following the merger of Waterford Foods and Avonmore.
The workers concerned are employed as maintenance craftsmen in the Ingredients Division at the Company's plant in Virginia.
The dispute before the Court concerns a claim by the Union on behalf of fourteen craftsmen for an increase in their basic rate of pay to bring them in line with their counterparts at the Company's plant in Ballyragget.
The Company rejects the claim on the basis that the two plants are not comparable in terms of size, complexity and work content.
The issue could not be resolved at local level.
The dispute was the subject of conciliation conferences under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission, held on the 22nd of June, 1999, the 14th of July, 1999, the 10th of September, 1999, the 27th of October, 1999, and on the 2nd of December, 1999.
As agreement was not reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 17th of May, 2000, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. The craftsmen in Ballyragget are paid £2.81 per hour more than the craftsmen in Virginia. This is not acceptable.
2. The Company's request for six redundancies is unacceptable.
3. The Union is seeking an increase in the basic rate of pay for craftsmen in Virginia to bring them into line with their counterparts in Ballyragget. Retrospection should be applied from the date of the merger.
4. 1. The two plants are not comparable in terms of size, complexity and work content. Craftsmen in Virginia operate a two shift cycle and in Ballyragget they operate a continuous cycle.
2. This is a cost increasing claim and the Company cannot afford a non productivity related pay increase.
The Court, having considered the information presented by the parties in this case, is not satisfied that the Conditions of Employment in the two operations are the same.
The Court, in considering the comparable Conditions of Employment, has taken account of the size and complexity of the two operations, and the working arrangements.
The Court, therefore, does not recommend concession of this claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
26th May, 2000______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.