INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 13(9), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
SCOIL MHUIRE, NAVAN
(REPRESENTED BY ARTHUR O'HAGAN SOLICITORS)
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION)
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Carberry
Worker Member: Mr. Somers
1. Appeal against Rights Commissioners Recommendation IR/218/01/TB.
2. The worker commenced employment as a caretaker in July, 1979. In June 2001, the Union sought a meeting with the School Principal in regard to the worker's terms and conditions, including the issue of a pension. In July, 2001, the worker was informed that the School had taken a decision that he should retire. The Union sought that he should be given a pension or, as a second option, some sort of severance/redundancy pay. The School offered €1,270 which was rejected by the worker.
The worker referred his case to a Rights Commissioner and his recommendation was as follows:-
"Based on the evidence I consider the issue of pension for National School caretakers needs to be addressed at the appropriate level.
In respect of the claimant I recommend that the School should pay him a severance gratuity of €5,000."
The Union appealed the recommendation to the Labour Court on the 20th of March, 2002, in accordance with Section 13(9) if the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 19th of September, 2002, in Navan.
3. 1. The worker has given 20 years of loyal service to the School. He has no disciplinary record on file.
2. The School's offer of €1,270 reflected €59.68 per year of service and is unacceptable. The Union understands that the €1,270 was absorbed in the payment of minimum notice.
3. The School recently completed major renovations which would have cost hundreds of thousands of Euro but the Rights Commissioner's recommendation has not been honoured.
4.1. The worker is 70 years of age which is well past the age of retirement.
2. The School had a number of areas of concern regarding the worker. These included cleanliness in the School and his unauthorised use of the School grounds as a car park for his own financial gain.
3. The School has very limited financial resources and cannot pay the worker more than it already has.
The Court has considered the written and oral submissions of both parties. The Court concurs with the findings of the Rights Commissioner and recommends that the severance gratuity of €5,000 as recommended by him should be paid in two equal moieties, the first should be paid three months from the date of this recommendation and the second three months later.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
30th September, 2002
Enquiries concerning this Decision should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.