INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
GE SUPERABRASIVES IRELAND LIMITED
(REPRESENTED BY THE IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION)
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Pierce
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Holiday entitlement and allocation of holiday breaks.
2. The Company manufactures superabrasive products used in the cutting, grinding and drilling industries at its plant in Clonshaugh Industrial Estate, Coolock. It currently employs approximately 190 staff.
Over the past number of years, the Company has experienced trading difficulties which
required major restructuring at the plant. The changes included the introduction of an
annualised hours system which was fully negotiated and agreed with the Union.
In the annualised hours system, only days due to be worked are shown in the shift roster. The shift roster is based on a 35 day work cycle with 10 x "10 day off " blocks during the year. Shift employees at the plant have 300 hours holidays per year which are incorporated into rostered off time between worked shifts.
The dispute before the Court concerns a claim by the Union on behalf of one of its members in relation to the annual leave provision under the annualised hours system. The Union referred the dispute to the Labour Court on the 19th of July, 2001 in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 17th of October,2001. The Union agreed to be bound by the Court's recommendation.
3. 1. The Company maintains that the "ten off block" nominated by employees for holidays uses up 120 hours from the holiday entitlement and that during the remaining "nine off blocks" holiday entitlements would erode on the basis of 20 hours per "off block".
2. The method used by the Company to calculate the holiday entitlement is unfair as employees do not work a 120 hour week and therefore, could not use up 120 hours while on holidays for one week.
3. The Company should adhere to the commitment given in 1995/1996.
4. 1. The annualised hours system was fully negotiated and agreed with the Union.
2. In 1995, the Company changed from a 12 hour shift pattern to an 8 hour shift pattern, but reverted to a 12 hour shift pattern at the request of the Union.
3. The current method of annual leave calculation is in full compliance with the collective agreement and it compares favourably with comparable employment.
The Court has carefully considered the submissions of the parties and the other information and documentation provided.
The Court is satisfied that the manner in which holidays are allocated in respect of the individual claimant in this case and the method of draw-down applied to him is the same as that consistently applied by the Company to all employees.
In these circumstances, the Court does not recommend concession of the Union's claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
2nd November, 2001______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.