INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
TINSLEY WIRE IRELAND LIMITED
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
TECHNICAL, ENGINEERING AND ELECTRICAL UNION
MANUFACTURING SCIENCE FINANCE
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Keogh
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
2. The Unions' claim is for enhanced redundancy terms on behalf of 33 workers in the Company's plant in Finglas. The Company is involved in the manufacture and sale of agricultural fencing products and wire. It is part of the Bekaert MP Europe Division.
The Company was involved in a major restructuring in January, 1999. Since then it has been affected by the Foot and Mouth epidemic and BSE crises in Ireland and the U.K. In July, 2002, the Company announced the closure of the Finglas plant. The Union is seeking a redundancy formula of 7 weeks' pay per year of service plus statutory redundancy. The Company's final offer was 2.5 weeks' pay plus statutory entitlements. The offer was rejected by the Union.
The dispute was referred to the Labour Relations Commission and 2 conciliation conferences took place. As the parties did not reach agreement, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 20th of December, 2002, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 21st of January, 2003.
3 1. The Company could have been saved. The only reason it is being closed is that it is not profitable enough. The jobs of the workers in Finglas are being sacrificed purely for profit.
2. The Bekaert Group is very successful and can afford to pay the redundancy sought by the Union.
3. The average service of the workers is 18 years. They have done everything possible to keep the Company viable.
4. It was announced in July, 2002, that a budget of €48 million had been set aside for a restructuring plan, including the closure of 3 plants. The Unions estimate that €2.6 million should be set aside for the Finglas Plant.
4. 1. In 1999, the Company was forced to make 26 workers redundant due to major losses. Whilst this resulted in returning the business to marginal profitability, poor market conditions and increased competition have eroded this position.
2. The Company produces 2 products which will not be required in the future (details supplied to the Court). The loss of the products will result in losses for the Company in 2003.
3. The Foot and Mouth and the BSE crises had a serious effect on the Company's profit in recent years. It has also faced strong overseas competition.
4. The redundancy terms on offer are very generous considering the Company's current financial situation.
The Court has considered the submissions of both sides and recommends that, due to the circumstances of the Company closure and the resultant redundancies, the Company's severance package should be increased to 4.5 weeks' pay per year of service, inclusive of the statutory entitlement, with a capping of 2.5 years' pay; plus pay in lieu of notice.
The Court recommends that these terms should be accepted in full and final settlement of the claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
28th January, 2003______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.