INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
LIMERICK INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION
Chairman: Mr McGee
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Proposed method of filling clerical officer vacancy.
2. The dispute concerns a claim by the worker that she should have been appointed to a permanent Grade 3 Clerical Officer/Library Assistant position in the Library at Limerick Institute of Technology. The worker was first employed by the Institute on 21st October, 2002 on a temporary fixed term contract. In line with nationally agreed recruitment procedures an open competition took place in order to put a common panel together for posts arising in the Clerical Officer/Library Assistant Areas. The worker applied for and was successful in being placed number 5 on the panel. The worker was offered specified purpose contracts covering maternity leave and career breaks of other administration staff over the following months. On the 13th June, 2005 the worker emailed and wrote to the Institute stating that she would not be returning to work.
The Union is seeking the re-instatement with a permanent post of Clerical Officer and compensation for the hardship caused as a result of Management's failure to make a permanent appointment when a vacancy arose.
An agreement was reached following a report by Chapman Flood Mazars (CFM) for the filling of posts arising from this report. This agreement between the Department of Education and Science, The Institute of Technology and IMPACT refers to "eligibility criteria and arrangements for the first competition for the filling of posts arising from the CFM report".
The Institute's position is that it followed nationally agreed procedures in relation to the filling of posts and has no liability in relation to the non appointment of the worker to a permanent position. As stated in the agreement the Grade 3 Library Assistant post which became available in 2004 was a third filling and therefore did not fall under the agreement reached under CFM report.
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 25th July, 2005 in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 7th December, 2005.
3.1 Due to Management's actions with regard to this issue the worker was denied her appointment to a permanent position within the Institute. This is despite her considerable service of nearly 3 years service with the Institute and her position next on the permanent panel.
2. The worker has been put under considerable stress and worry and her career and future employment have been drastically affected by the Management's actions.
4.1 The worker has referred to an agreement for the filling of posts arising from the implementation of a Report "Chapman Flood Mazars" (CFM).As stated in the agreement the Grade 3 Library Assistant post which became available in 2004 was a third filling and therefore did not fall under the agreement reached under CFM report.
2. The Institute consulted with permanent library staff and agreed that in the interests of staff, the library service and the Institute would be best served by the non-filing of a permanent position and the use of part-time hours to meet the needs of the library users.
3. The Union are seeking the appointment of 14 full time staff in the library service. This is not possible because of the need to retain the flexibility within the library service. The Institute will employ the equivalent of 14 full time positions in line with its allocations but must retain part-time hours to accommodate the needs of its clients and students.
The Court feels that this is a most unusual and unfortunate case. There is no doubt that the claimant suffered disappointment in not being appointed to a permanent position, having achieved a position on the panel. In these unique circumstances, the Court recommends that she be paid the sum of €2,000 in full and final settlement.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
6th January, 2006______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Jackie Byrne, Court Secretary.