INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Grier
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Negotiation Agreements
2. The case before the Court concerns a dispute between Griffner Coillte and SIPTU in relation to the right of the Union to represent its members both individually and collectively. The Company has been operating in Ireland since 2002 and is engaged in the design and manufacture of timber framed housing. The Union is claiming that there are employees of the Company who have joined the Union and that the Union has tried to negotiate with the Company to no avail. The Company rejects the Union's claim on the basis that it deals directly with its employees on all matters relating to terms and conditions and that a survey of the employees revealed that there was no interest in joining the Trade Union.
The dispute could not be resolved and the Union referred the dispute to the Labour Court on 4th July 2005 in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on 16th December 2005
3. 1. There are a number of employees of the Company who have joined the Union although they have been reluctant to come forward for fear of reprisals from management.
2. As 70% of the Company is owned by thestate owned Company Coillte Teoranta, and given the commitment of Government to Social Partnership, the Company should acknowledge the right of its employees to be represented by the Union of their choice.
4. 1. The Company deals directly with its employees in relation to all matters relating to terms and conditions of employment.
2. The Company position is that if the majority of its employees wish to be represented by a Trade Union, this would be accepted. To date, the majority of the employees have stated they do not wish to be represented by a Trade Union and are satisified with the current procedures within the Company.
The Union sought recognition on behalf of three production operatives who are members of the Union. The Company explained to the Court that it wished to respect the wishes of its employees and if a significant number wished to be represented by the Union then it would respect those wishes, however, in the meantime it was not aware of any of its employees being in membership of the Union. A survey of the production staff found that they were not interested in joining the Union.
Having considered the matter, the Court recommends that the Company should recognise the Union's right to represent those employees, which it has in membership.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
9th January 2006______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Andrew Heavey, Court Secretary.