INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
SOUTH EASTERN HEALTH BOARD (ST JOSEPH'S HOSPITAL)
- AND -
IRISH NURSES ORGANISATION
IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION
Chairman: Mr Flood
Employer Member: Mr Carberry
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Disturbance compensation.
2. In 1995, it was announced that Our Lady's Hospital, Cashel and St. Joseph's Hospital, Clonmel would be amalgamated to form one hospital. The site for this new hospital was to be the current location of St. Joseph's Hospital, Clonmel. The Unions' claim on behalf of members is for compensation for the disturbance caused by the development works. The compensation sought is two days extra leave and a fixed payment of €1,270 per year for the period of the project. The Board offered the workers concerned two days extra leave per year for two years which was unacceptable to the Unions. The issue could not be resolved at local level.
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 in Kilkenny on the 4th of October, 2002, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. The staff concerned have contended with extra work, unacceptable levels of noise, poor accessibility to different sections of the hospital, relocation of several departments and the demolition of part of the existing building and still provided a good service to the public.
2. The two days extra leave per year for two years offered by the Board does not constitute a reasonanble offer.
3. The staff concerned have demonstrated loyalty to the Board in accommodating and maintaining normal hospital functions during the building works and therefore should be compensated by receiving two days extral leave and €1,270 per year for the period of the project.
4. 1. The Board has been involved in a number of major projects including the construction of a new regional hospital in Waterford where the new hospital was constructed on the site of the existing hospital. The project took approximately eight years with major disruption. No compensation was paid to staff.
2. Management has endeavoured to minimise the disruption in the interest of patients and staff.
3. The claim cannot be conceded as there are no funds available.
The Court having considered the written and oral submissions made by the parties recommends as follows:-
The Management offer of two days extra leave for two years should be increased to two days extra leave per year for the period of the project, commencing in holiday year 2000.
The Court does not accept that this leave should be on a non-replacement basis, and therefore recommends that payment for these days should be made in cases where the leave cannot be taken under the normal arrangements.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
21st October, 2002______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Gerardine Buckley, Court Secretary.