INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
UNIVERSITY OF LIMERICK
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Grading of Head of Counselling.
2. The worker has been employed by the University of Limerick as a Counsellor since September 1986. His initial appointment as student counsellor was at Grade VII, this has since been regraded to Grade IX. This regrade was specific to the post holder and approved on the basis that he maintained his counselling duties and had undertaken additional managerial responsibilities appropriate to a Grade IX post. The worker is currently at the maximum of his scale. The Union, on behalf of the worker, are seeking a regrading to a level equivalent to Senior Lecturer. The University has rejected the claim as it believes that the position is appropriately graded.
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 could not be reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 25th July 2005, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 22nd February 2006.
3. 1. The review that led to the regrading was not carried out in consultation with the Union, the post incumbent or his immediate manager and therefore does not meet any reasonable standard of objectivity.
2. The decision to grade the claimant to Grade IX in 1989 was made without including any reference to management responsibilities. It was considered appropriate because of the high level of professional expertise required for the job.
4. 1. The University is satisfied that the post of counsellor held by the Claimant at Grade IX falls correctly within the University of Limerick's Management/Grading structure.
2. Concession of this claim would have significant knock on effects.
3. The claim before the Court represents a significant claim for increasing costs which is expressly prohibited under Section 19.6 of the Sustaining Progress Agreement.
The Court notes the University's commitment to putting in place a mechanism for considering regrading at Grade IX.
In the Court's view this approach is reasonable and should be accepted. The Court further recommends that the necessary arrangements for this review be put in place within six months of the date of this Recommendation.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
24th February, 2006______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Madelon Geoghegan, Court Secretary.