INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(2), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
WATERFORD CITY & COUNTY COUNCIL
(REPRESENTED BY THE LGMA)
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION)
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Ms Doyle
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. Regularisation of Long Term Acting Post.
2. The case before the Court concerns a dispute between the Employer and the Union on behalf of its member in relation to the regularisation of the long term acting up position held by the Worker. The Union contends that the Worker has held the position for a period in excess of eleven years and is seeking to be regularised into the post retrospectively. The Employer rejects the Union's claim, arguing that it is a cost-increasing claim and is so precluded under the terms of the current Public Services Agreement. Agreement could not be reached between the parties.
The case was referred to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 20(2) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on 16th October, 2014.
Both parties agreed to be bound by the Recommendation of the Court.
3.1. The Worker filled his respective acting-up position for a period of eleven years and was of the view that it was a position of indefinite duration.
2. The Worker is currently seeking permanent appointment into the position.
4.1. The Employer asserts that it is not in a position to regularise the Worker into the role in this manner as it would set precedent as to how future vacancies may be filled.
2. The Employer maintains that this is a pay claim and is precluded under the terms of the Public Services Agreement 2010-2014.
The Court accepts that the circumstances of this case are exceptional on a number of grounds. The Claimant has held the Grade VI post for an extraordinary length of time. He was appointed to the post following an open competition. The formal notice appointing him did not specify that the post was in an acting capacity. Up to January 2009 the Claimant’s appointment was renewed annually. However it is of very considerable significance that from 2010 onwards no formal order was made continuing the appointment on a temporary basis.
In these circumstances the Court is satisfied that the de facto position is that the Claimant became established in the Grade VI post. The substance on the Union’s case is that the reality of that position should be recognised.
Having regard to the confluence of unique circumstances surrounding this case the Court recommends that the Union’s claim be conceded.
For the avoidance of doubt the Court wishes to make it clear that this recommendation is made having regard to the unique circumstances referred to above. It therefore has no precedent value or application beyond this case. Consequently this recommendation should not be relied upon or quoted by this or any other Union or individual in any other case.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
28th October 2014______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Sharon Cahill, Court Secretary.