INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Carberry
Worker Member: Mr. Somers
1. Compensation arising from a refit in the Ballinteer store.
2. The Superquinn Store in Ballinteer underwent a major refit in 2001. The work involved lasted from May/June to November. The Union's case is on behalf of approximately 320 workers, and is for compensation for the inconvenience caused during the refit. In March, 2002, the Company held a party to thank the Ballinteer staff. The cost of the party was approximately €8,000. The Union is seeking €200 for each worker and one day's holiday for each full month of inconvenience on a once-off basis.
The dispute was referred to the Labour Relations Commission and a conciliation conference took place. As the parties did not reach agreement, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 20th of February, 2002, in accordance with Section 26(1) of
the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 30th of May, 2002.
3. 1. The refit was a major one and involved new roof and flooring, and increasing the overall area (a full list of the refurbishments was supplied to the Court).
2. As a result of the refit, there were excessive levels of noise, dust, and fumes which resulted in various ailments for the workers (details supplied to the Court).
3. Inconvenience claims are a regular feature of the retail business over many years.
4. 1. The refit cost the Company €3.68 million, and was necessary for the store to remain competitive.
2. It has always been the precedent in such cases for the Company to hold a party to reward the staff. In this case, the party in March, 2002, cost approximately €8,000 including food, drink, and prizes.
3. The Company tried at all times to keep the inconvenience to a minimum.
The Labour Court has given careful consideration to the written and oral submissions of the parties. The Court is of the view that the level and scale of the refurbishments in the Ballinteer store, from the months of May to November, 2001, were of such an extent as to warrant the payment of a gesture of goodwill in excess of the value of the party provided for in March, 2002. Therefore, the Court recommends that the Company should pay an additional €5,000 into the social fund to be used as the members see fit.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
2nd July, 2002______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.