INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
FLAIR INTERNATIONAL LTD
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Non-Payment of a productivity bonus to workers who are injured at work.
2. The Company manufactures shower/bath screens, shower trays and related items at its plant in Bailieboro, Co. Cavan. It employees 150 workers. The Company operates a sick pay scheme whereby workers who are injured at work are paid their full wages for thirteen weeks. The Union claims that they should also be paid their normal productivity bonus (up to £50per week) during this period. The Company rejected the claim. The dispute was referred to the Labour Relations Commission. A conciliation conference was held on the 30th March, 2000 but no agreement was reached.
The dispute was referred to the Labour Couret by the Labour Relations Commision on the 11thApril, 2000. A Court hearing was held in Cavan on the 8thNovember, 2000, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. The productivity bonus allows workers to supplement their take home payby up to £50 per week. In the event of sustaining a work related injuury at work, basic pay is paid but the productivity bonus element is not. This results in a substantial loss of income at a time when workers can least afford it.
2. Workers suffering a substantial loss as a result of work related injury will have no option but to pursue a legal claim against the Company.
4. 1. The Company's bonus scheme operates on a strictly self financing basis with agreed targets to be met. Currently the scheme has not reached its target of being self financing and it will remain under review.
2. The payment of the bonus to workers who are injured at work would put additional pressure on the scheme resulting in the viability of the scheme being placed in question.
3. The Company already has a generous scheme in place. Any addition to this will put extra pressure on the Company.
4. This bonus is a varied amount with no guaranteed payment on a regular basis and in order to benefit productivity targets must be met. This clearly means that the incentive would be decreased if automatic payment was guaranteed.
The Court has given consideration to all aspects of this case. The productivity payment claimed when out due to an injury at work emanated from a scheme originally introduced as a self-financing gain-sharing scheme. This scheme has turned into a productivity scheme predicated entirely on an increased level of productivity, yielding varying amounts of benefit.The Court is of the view that as no productivity is produced when not in attendance at work, no payments should be made from the scheme during such periods.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Tom O'Dea, Court Secretary.