INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
CADBURY IRELAND LIMITED
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Mr. Somers
1. Hearing arising from Labour Court Recommendation No. 16881.
2. On the 21st of August, 2001, a dispute concerning the Company's proposals for the implementation of a comprehensive productivity flexibility agreement (Vision 2000) at the Rathmore plant was the subject of a Labour Court investigation. On the 28th of August, 2001, the Court issued LCR16881 as follows:-
"The Company has made a point that the issue of the contracting out of transport and distribution at Rathmore and the current issue before the Court, are inextricably linked and must be viewed together. As the Court has been involved in both disputes, it can concur with this view. On the 3rd of May, 2001, the Court issued Recommendation No. 16804 endorsing the Company's decision to eliminate the transport and distribution functions and it further recommended that negotiations should take place "for the purpose of agreeing a package for those individuals who may be affected by the change." The Court recommended that this process should be completed by the 1st of June, 2001. To date this has not happened and no vote has taken place on the recommendation.
The Court is concerned at the perception that insufficient discussions and negotiations have taken place on both issues and,therefore, wishes to put in place a framework for such a process to take place. Therefore, the Court recommends that the parties should enter into discussions and negotiations under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. The Court recommends that both issues - the implications of contracting out of transport and distribution in Rathmore and Vision 2000 should be dealt with in tandem. This process should be dealt with as swiftly as possible and should be completed by not later than the 15th of October, 2001.
Any outstanding matters should be referred back to the Court for a definitive recommendation.
Subsequently, extensive negotiations were held under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission but agreement was not reached. A set of proposals were outlined which were rejected without ballot. With the agreement of the parties, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court by the Labour Relations Commission on the 22nd of October,2001. The dispute was received in the Court on the 22nd of October, 2001. A Court hearing was held on the 9th of November, 2001, to consider the outstanding matters.
This case has been referred back to the Court for a definitive recommendation in accordance with the provisions of LCR16881. Extensive consultation and negotiation has taken place on the issues concerned. These issues have been considered in great depth in many different fora - at local level, under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission and by the Labour Court itself. Every effort has been made to resolve the many genuine concerns of the workforce emanating from the contracting out of the distribution and transport sections of the Company and the proposals on Vision 2000. However, despite the many concessions granted, the Union committee have refused to put proposals to the general membership on the basis that the proposals do not go far enough.
The Industrial Relations Officer of the Labour Relation Commission, following extensive conciliation on the most recent positions, has put forward proposals which are acceptable to the Company and rejected by the Union. At this point, the Court has considered the position of both sides and is of the view that these proposals represent a fair, reasonable and generous offer to the employees affected by the changes. The Court does recommend one amendment to those proposals - the compensation payment to van drivers should be increased from the proposed £3,000 (3,809.21 Euro) to £5,000 (6,348.69 Euro).
Therefore, the Court recommends that the Labour Relations Commission proposals dated 16th October, 2001, (see attached) amended by the above recommendation on the issue of compensation for van drivers, should be accepted in full and final settlement of all claims in relation to contracting out of the distribution and transport and Vision 2000.
The Court strongly recommends that this recommendation must be put forward for secret ballot of the entire workforce.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
19th November, 2001______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Tom O'Dea, Court Secretary.