INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
MINCH MALT LIMITED
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Carberry
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Disparity in basic rate.
2. The Company is part of the Greencore Malting Group. It manufactures malt for the drinks industry in Ireland and abroad at its plant in Athy, Co. Kildare.
In 2001, arising from a re-structuring programme, new work pratices and annualised salaries were introduced in the Company. In October, 2001, three workers were taken on at the plant. The Union claims that these three workers were paid at a higher basic rate than the eleven workers already employed. There was disparity in the rate for an eight week period while the three new workers were being trained and the eleven workers adjusted to the new work practices. The Company rejects the claim stating that the eleven workers did not suffer a loss during the eight week period.
The dispute was the subject of a conciliation conference under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. As agreement could not be reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 7th of June, 2002, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 26th of November, 2002, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. During the eight week period eleven employees had to work shifts and weekends plus overtime to earn the same gross amount of pay as the three new employees.
2. The eleven employees should receive compensation for the shortfall in earnings.
4. 1. A redefined method of payment was agreed to compensate for changes in work practices. The new method did not affect the basic rate of pay for any employee.
2. None of the three employees earned more than the existing eleven employees as the basic rate was the same for them all whatever system they operated under. Therefore, there is no justification in the Union's claim.
Having examined the detail of this case, the Court can see no basis for the claim by eleven workers that there is disparity in their basic rate of pay when compared with the pay of three new workers. Accordingly, the Court rejects the Union's claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
5th December, 2002______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.