INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2001
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
BM DRUMCONDRA MOTORS
(REPRESENTED BY GORE & GRIMES SOLICITORS)
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Grier
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Payment of loss of wages.
2. The dispute before the Court concerns a worker who was employed as a manager by BM Drumcondra Motors from January 2001 to December 2001. His responsibilities included managing the parts and services departments. On the 30th November 2001 a new General Manager was appointed by the company, his role was to restructure and review roles within the company.
On the 11th December 2001 the worker met with the General Manager to discuss his concerns regarding his future with the company. The General Manager explained that he had reviewed the workers department and could not guarantee him a future with the company. The worker then resigned from his post and was asked to leave on that date.
The worker referred the case to the Labour Court on 22nd May 2003 in accordance with Section (20)1 of the Industrial Act 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 26th September 2003, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
The worker agreed to be bound by the recommendation of the Court.
3. 1. The worker claims that he was not provided with terms of his contract of employment, including procedures available for addressing employee grievances.
2. The worker believed his employment would be terminated, as his manager had spoken to other members of staff and not the worker, leading to feelings of isolation.
4. 1. The General Manager spent his first weeks in the company restructuring the car sales department and as a result did not have the time to speak to the employees.
2. The General Manager informed the worker at the meeting that he would be reviewing the worker's role along with all other employees in the near future, and could not guarantee the worker a future with the company.
The Court is satisfied that the claimant's resignation was in response to his belief that his continued employment was in jeopardy. In normal circumstances the factors giving rise to that belief should have been processed through that company's grievance procedure. However, the claimant was not provided with particulars of the terms of his contract of employment, including the procedures available for addressing employee grievances. This may have contributed to the claimant's decision to react as he did.
In the circumstances the Court cannot say that the claimant was constructively dismissed. Nonetheless, by not drawing the claimant's attention to the appropriate process for addressing his grievances, the company must take some responsibility for what occurred. In the circumstances the Court recommends that the claimant receive an ex-gratia payment equal to an additional one months pay in full and final settlement of his claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Jo O'Connor, Court Secretary.