INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
NATIONAL MATERNITY HOSPITAL
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr Doherty
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Hours of Work, Rosters, Loss of Pay
2. This case concerns a dispute between the National Maternity Hospital and IMPACT in relation to compensation for loss of earnings for three Household Supervisors employed by the Hospital. The dipute has arisen as a result of management's intention to develop new rosters which the Union argues will greatly reduce the earnings of the workers and will require them to work additional hours.
The dispute was not resolved at local level and was the subject of a number of conciliation conferences under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached the matter was referred to the Labour Court on 12th May, 2010 in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on 5th August, 2010.
3 1 The current rosters have been in place for many years and form part of the workers guaranteed earnings. The need to change the rosters is accepted but Management must accept the workers' entitlement to compensation for the loss of earnings
2 The actual loss to each worker is approximately €2,500 per annum. This is a huge loss of income to a household when considered in addition to other cuts and levies that have been imposed on workers in recent times.
4 1 The current rosters are both inefficient and costly. Management are attempting to review the rosters with a view to optimising the deployment of staff and operating in a more cost effective manner. It does not accept that compensation is due in circumstances where management are tasked with making substantial savings to its ongoing costs.
2 Other groups have incurred the same losses as the Household Supervisors yet have accepted additional annual leave as a method of resolution. Management has offered additional annual leave and the opportunity to mitigate the loss of earnings by getting alternative work in another area yet both offers have been rejected.
The Court notes that the payments at issue in this case are in the nature of pay and are pensionable. In that respect the Claimants are in a different position to that of others who lost non-pensionable overtime.
Having regard to the special circumstances of this case the Court believes that some element of compensation is justified. Accordingly the Court recommends that compensation in the following amounts be paid: -
•Employee (a) with 30 years service €5,000
•Employee (b) with 9 years service €2,000
•Employee (c) with 5 years service €1,500
It is further noted that the Hospital’s offer of additional annual leave is still available.
Since this recommendation is based the special circumstances pertaining in this case it is not intended to have any precedent value or application to any other group or individual.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
6th August 2010______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Andrew Heavey, Court Secretary.