INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Pierce
Worker Member: Mr. Somers
1. Rates and conditions for seven employees.
2. The Company is engaged in the production of Citric Acid. The dispute before the Court arises from LCR 16535 which outlined new pay rates and conditions to apply to new permanent employees. The Company proposed to appoint seven long-term temporary employees to permanent positions on the new lower rates of pay. The Union states that these employees should be appointed under the existing agreement. The dispute could not be resolved at local level and was the subject of several conciliation conferences under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court under Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 15th of November, 2000.
3. 1. It has always been the intention of the Union to discuss with the Company an agreement on pay and conditions for future employees.
2. The Company threatened to lay-off the existing temporary staff to facilitate its needs for a new rate of pay and conditions for the future.
3. It is unacceptable that the Company approached the individuals advising them of new rates of pay instead of approaching the Union.
4. The seven employees concerned should be employed under the existing Company/Union agreement.
4. 1. It was made clear to the seven employees that the new rates of pay and conditions would apply to them when agreed.
2. The Company has tried to be fair to the employees concerned. It has agreed to give credit for temporary service to date in respect of their starting point on the new pay scales and in respect of pensionable service.
3. To make the seven employees permanent on the current rates of pay and to employ new staff on the revised rates would cause industrial relations problems within the Company.
The Court notes that the net question referred for investigation and recommendation is whether the seven temporary employees being appointed to the permanent staff should be regarded as new employees for the purpose of applying revised pay and conditions of employment under consideration but not yet agreed.
Having considered the submissions of the parties, and in particular the terms of the proposal put to the Union in December 1999, the Court is satisfied that the employees concerned could not properly be regarded as new employees.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
24th November 2000______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.