INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Ms Doyle
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. Various Issues.
2. The case before the Court concerns a claim by the Union on behalf of its members employed across Dunnes Stores retail outlets nationwide. The dispute relates specifically to various issues such as the introduction of sufficient weekly hours threshold, pay scales and wage rates, the use of temporary contracts and Union representation rights. The Union referred the case to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on 9th April, 2015. The Employer was not present and was not represented at the hearing.
The Union agreed to be bound by the Recommendation of the Court.
The Court finds it regrettable that the Company declined the opportunity to participate in the Court’s investigation of this dispute and to put forward its position on the issues raised by the Union.
The same issues that are now raised by SIPTU formed the subject matter of a dispute between this Company and Mandate Trade Union which was investigated by the Court in October 2014. Following that investigation the Court issued Recommendation LCR20874. In relevant part the Court held in that Recommendation as follows: -
- In LCR 20461 the Court made specific reference to the two previous occasions on which this matter came before it. In that recommendation the Court stated:
- In LCR 19511 and LCR 20029 the Court noted that the Company and the Union were party to a collective agreement signed in 1996 which provides a procedural framework within which industrial relations disputes and differences arising between the parties can be resolved by negotiation and dialogue. The Court pointed out that the dictates of good industrial relations practice requires parties to honour their collective agreements in both the spirit and intent. However, it now appears that the Company has failed to observe these procedures in dealing with the Union’s claim. The Court once again emphasises the need for both parties to engage with each other in accordance within the terms of the 1996 agreement in relation to any disputes and differences between the parties.
The Union in this case has, on its members’ behalf and in accordance with the terms of the Agreement, raised a number of grievances with the Company. The Company, contrary to the terms of the 1996 Collective Agreement, has refused to engage with the Union on those grievances either in direct talks, through the LRC or at the Labour Court. The Union for its part has discharged its obligations under the terms of the Agreement and the Court so finds.
The Court notes the complexity of the issues raised in the Union’s submission and recommends that the parties, within four weeks of the date of this Recommendation, and, if necessary, with the assistance of the LRC, meet in an effort to resolve them.
- The Court remains available to the parties should they jointly decide to refer the issues on which they cannot reach agreement back to it for a definitive recommendation.
There is no reason as to why the Court should vary or depart from the commentary or the recommendations contained in Recommendation LCR20874. Accordingly the Court recommends that the dispute now before it be resolved on the same basis as that set out in Recommendation LCR20874.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
27th April 2015______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Sharon Cahill, Court Secretary.