INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
TECHNICAL, ENGINEERING AND ELECTRICAL UNION
- AND -
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Murphy
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Long Service Increment
2. This case concerns a dispute between MANDATE (Union) and TEEU (Employer) in relation to the application of a Long Service Increment (LSI) to an employee of the TEEU. The worker in question is employed as an office manager and is paid a differential of 31.5% above clerical staff pay rates.
In 2000, following negotiation between the Employer and the Union, the introduction of the LSI was agreed for clerical staff who have been at the maximim point of the payscale for three years.
The Union's position is that the LSI should also be applied to its member on the basis that it applies to all other staff and the fact that the worker was not party to the agreement, should not result in a reduction in the value of his differential. The Employer's position is that the worker's differential is based on the maximum point of the pay scale exclusive of the LSI and that the claim is cost increasing and precluded under Sustaining Progress.
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 matter was referred to the Labour Court on 28th July, 2006 in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on 28th November, 2006, the earliest date suitable to the parties.
3. 1. The introduction of an LSI was agreed for clerical staff in 2000. The worker in question should also have benefited from the LSI as his differential of 31.5% is based on the maximum point of the clerical pay scale.
2. Although the worker was not party to the agreement, it is unacceptable to reduce the value of the differential by excluding him from receiving the LSI. The claim as presented is fair and reasonable in the circumtances.
4. 1. The worker absented himself from the negotiations of the LSI for clerical staff opting instead to negotiate his own rates of pay at the time. The worker, therefore, has no entitlement to benefit from the agreement made between Mandate/SIPTU and the Employer.
2. The claim is cost increasing and precluded under Sustaining Progress and Towards 2016.
The dispute before the Court concerns the claim by an Office Manager for a Long Service Increment.
Since March 2000, his salary was set a rate of 31.5% above the maximum point of the clerical scale.
Mandate, on behalf of the claimant, submitted to the Court that this entitles him to a differential over the Long Service Increment, which was introduced for the clerical grade following negotiations between the employer and Mandate/SIPTU in 1999/2000.
The employer rejected the claim and maintained that since March 2000 the claimant has had a personal pay arrangement and therefore, he was not entitled to benefit from the negotiated arrangements with Mandate/SIPTU.
Having considered the submissions of both parties, the Court accepts that the claimant’s contract entitles him to a differential of 31.5% above the 12th point of the clerical scale. Accordingly the Court upholds the employer’s contention.
However, due to the claimant’s length of service the Court upholds the claim for the application of a Long Service Increment. Therefore, the Court recommends that the parties should agree on the value of a Long Service Increment appropriate to the claimant’s circumstances.
The Court so recommends.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
19th December 2006______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Andrew Heavey, Court Secretary.