INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Grier
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Compensation for disturbance/re-location.
2. The case before the Court concerns a dispute between Penneys Dundrum and Mandate in relation to compensation for re-location and a loss of car parking following the transfer of business to a much larger store in the Dundrum Town Centre. The Union is claiming that the relocation will mean increased travelling time for all its members, and the new working environment will impact negatively on their working conditions. The Union is seeking compensation for the re-location and the loss of car parking facilities.
The Company reject the claim on the basis that there will be no radical change to working conditions and any increase in travelling time is minimal. The loss of the car parking facilities is outside the control of the employers as this had been provided by the owners of the previous site.
The dispute could not be resolved at local level and was the subject of a conciliation conference under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 26th January, 2005, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 12th May, 2005, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. The re-location of the store will result in increased travelling time and expenses.
2. As regards the loss of free parking facilities, staff will be faced with increased parking expenses ranging from €2 per hour to €20 per day or charges of €162.78 per month to avail of the Luas Park and Ride facility
3. There are also Health and Safety issues with regard to other conditions within the premises such as clocking in, no locker facilities, inadequate store room space etc. There is also the issue of new uniforms which staff must purchase themselves.
4. 1. There is no significant changes in work practises. The new facilities are of a much higher standard which will greatly improve working conditions for all members of staff.
2. It is inappropriate to pay compensation for the re-location as other staff members have re-located and not claimed compensation. If this claim is conceded, repercussive claims will follow.
3. Car parking facilities were provided by the owners of the previous site. The loss of this facility is due to the demolition of the site rather than the re-location of the business. It is, therefore, outside the control of the Company and no compensation is payable.
The Court has carefully considered the submissions of the parties in this case. It is clear that the parking facilities of which some of the claimants availed were provided on a grace and favour basis by the owners of the shopping centre. The loss of this facility is attributable to the proposed demolition of the centre rather than their move to a new store. In these circumstances the Court does not believe that the workers concerned can maintain a claim against their employer for the loss of this facility. Furthermore, the degree of disturbance involved in the move to the new store is not such as to justify the payments claimed.
In the circumstances the Court does not recommend concession of the Union's claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
27th May, 2005______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Andrew Heavey, Court Secretary.