INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
QUEALLY PIG SLAUGHTERING LTD
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH BUSINESS AND EMPLOYERS' CONFEDERATION)
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Mr Murphy
Worker Member: Mr Shanahan
1. Pay claim.
2. The Company is based in Granagh, Co Kilkenny and supplies processed pork products to its customers in Ireland, U.K. and worldwide. The case concerns protracted negotiations regarding pay, production levels and related matters that have taken place since July 2012. In the intervening period the Company's business has experienced a number of setbacks resulting in the Workers being placed on reduced hours. Offers made in good faith at an earlier stage by Management to the Employees are now withdrawn.
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 7th June, 2013, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 18th September, 2013.
3. 1. The Union acknowledges the difficulties that the Company has experienced over the past number of years. At the same time the Workers have had their pay frozen since 2008 thus benefiting the Company's financial position.
2. The Workers remain flexible and co-operative with the normal day-to- day running of the Company and will continue to do so. This adds to the justification for an increase in basic pay after five years.
4. 1. The Company is confined to only proposing pay increases from future dates as currently due to the lack of raw material (pig meat) it cannot increase production levels to cover the associated increase in costs.
2. In recognition of the fact that the Company is now confined to pay increases from future dates, it has set aside any requirement for productivity gains until 2016.
The matter before the Court concerns a claim by the Union on behalf of the Operatives employed by the Company for payment of 3% from 1st July 2012.
In response to the claim the Company initially proposed an offer and a revised offer to include attainment of increased productivity which offers were rejected. However, in the meantime due to unforeseen difficulties which occurred resulting in decreases in raw material and other cost challenges, the Company subsequently offered to pay 2½% on a phased basis commencing from 1stJanuary 2014 to expire on 31stAugust 2016. The offer included increases to basic pay, production bonus, attendance bonus and Christmas bonus.
Having considered the positions of both sides the Court recommends that the Company should increase its overall offer to 3% of which 1% should be paid retrospectively from 1stSeptember 2013, 1% from 1stJanuary 2014 and 1% from 1stJanuary 2015 to expire on 30th June 2015.
The Court so recommends.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
25th October, 2013______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to John Foley, Court Secretary.