INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 2004
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr McGee
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr Nash
1. Re-hearing arising from LCR18513.
2. The dispute has arisen as a result of the Company's proposal to introduce a new Agreement on work structures and pay for 30 staff in the Mallow plant to replace the previous Site Collective Agreement (2002). The case was previously before the Court and LCR18513 issued in March, 2006. The full background to the case is contained in the recommendation. The issue before the Court is point (iv) of LCR18513 as follows:
(iv) The Union should meaningfully engage with the Company on its proposals for the future subject to the clear guarantee given by the Company that, in the event of redundancy occurring before the end of 2007, reckonable pay for the purposes of calculating the redundancy formula will be as set out in the current Company-Union Agreement, with no deduction for loss of earnings occasioned by any new working arrangements agreed between the parties.
The Union's case is that the Company implemented new pay/roster structures from October, 2006, without consulting the Union. An independent facilitator was brought in to try to resolve the issues. From the begining of January, 2007, workers were not paid for 10 weeks as a result of refusing to work under the new rosters although, the Union claims, the Company had promised that the workers would be back on the payroll by 25th January, 2007. The Union also claims that in December, 2006, it was told that the workers would receive all retrospection due to them under Towards 2016 if they accepted the new pay structures and rosters. The Union claims that the following proposals put by the Company were not what the Union had agreed to:
1. 43 weeks going forward were now to terminate in November, 2008.
2. Clause concerning the number of weeks work being available and the 90% value of same was also included and would automatically kick in after November, 2008.
3. A clause which would allow the Company terminate this agreement once they gave us three months' notice.
The parties agreed to refer the case back to the Court and a second hearing took place on the 30th of August, 2007.
3.1. The Union's commitment to accepting point (iv) of LCR18513 as above was not possiblefor a number of reasons e.g. non-negotiable Company proposals, non payment of award under LCR18513, deduction of 10 weeks' wages from the workers and changing of proposals agreed under the chairmanship of the independent facilitator.
4. 1.The Company 's strategy has been to follow a positive and progressive route to secure a viable business activity for its future in Ireland. This requires full support and co-operation by the Union and its members with the implementation of change. The Company's other two plants in Mitchelstown and Mogeely have both accepted the Company's proposals.
Having considered the submissions made by the parties and the history of this dispute up until now, the Court recommends as follows:-
The Union should co-operate with the introduction of the proposed new pay and conditions structure at Mallow. There should be certain understandings between the parties arising from this viz-
- (1) There should be a further employment agreement between the parties covering the next 2 years. After the agreed period, either party can withdraw from the agreement by giving 6 months notice.
(2) There should be a guarantee of a 43-week annual roster with a 90% L.O.E. formula, as proposed by the independent mediator, for the duration of the agreement.
(3) When redundancies arise they should be effected with reference to the 2002 Agreement, the question of potential redeployment as a solution should be explored by the parties as an alternative to redundancy.
(4) The matter of compensation for time off the payroll should be discussed locally in the first instance and, if necessary, at conciliation.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
24th September, 2007______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.