INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
COCA-COLA BOTTLERS IRELAND
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Meal allowance - Sales / Merchandisers
2. The Company produces and distributes Coca-Cola and Schewpps brands throughout the country. It has evolved by amalgamation and takeover from a number of Companies that distributed and sold the brands regionally. The Union's claim is on behalf of 200 of the Sales force and is for an increase in a meal allowance from a present rate of €9.92 per day to €14.62 per day. The figure of €14.62 is the allowance paid to nine drivers in Cork.
The allowance was first established in 1992 and was worth the equivalent of €8.89. The Union claimed the increase in April, 2003. Following a conciliation conference in June, 2004, with the Labour Relations Commission, the Company offered to increase the allowance to €10.22 per day from January, 2004, and to have it index-linked for payment each January into the future. The Union rejected the offer and the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 7th of July, 2004, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 18th of November, 2004.
3. 1. The Company's offer of €10.22 means that the allowance has only increased by €1.33 in 12 years.
2. The Company pays €14.62 per day to nine Cork Distribution drivers. The anomaly was caused by the Dublin Sales and Distribution workers accepting two moratoriumsonincreases from 1992 to 1996.
3. The Company's competitors pay considerably more for meal allowances - C&C pays €12.94 per day and United Beverages pay €75.00 per week.
1. The meal allowance, based on the IBEC National surveys of 2001 and 2004, is within the bands and near the average amount paid in the industry and by the Company's main competitors.
2. The cost of conceding the Union's claim would be €48,000 per euro increase or €225,000 if applied to the entire country, something the Company cannot afford.
3. The €14.62 paid to the nine drivers in Cork is part of a separate deal and is based on a local agreement that was introduced many years ago.
Having considered the views of the parties expressed in their oral and written submissions, the Court is of the view that the value of the lunch allowance has fallen behind in the period 1996 to date and, therefore, recommends that it should be increased to €12.90 per day with effect from 1st January, 2004. Additionally, the Court recommends acceptance of the Company's proposal to increase the allowance in line with the Consumer Price Index, on an annual basis, with effect from 1st January, 2005.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
25th November, 2004______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.