INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 13(9), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION)
Chairman: Ms Jenkinson
Employer Member: Ms Cryan
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. Appeal of Rights Commissioner's Recommendation R-152060-ir-14-EOS
2. The Claimant is seeking full retrospection for the non-payment of a Subsistence Allowance dating back to when he commenced employment with the Company.
It is the view of the Employer that the claimant received the appropriate allowance.
- This matter was referred to a Rights Commissioner for investigation and Recommendation. On the 24th July 2015 the Rights Commissioner issued the following Recommendation:-
I have reviewed the evidence presented at the hearing and note the respondent is prepared to increase the offer to settle the dispute to pay retrospection from the dateof the claim. I also note that the union's calculations did not allow for the deduction of the eating on site allowance paid to the claimant.
Having considered the submissions of both parties I recommend in full and final settlement of this complaint that the respondent pay the claimant €4,000 compensation and that the union accept this is arising from uniquecircumstances and cannot be invoked or relied upon in any other fora.On the 4thAugust 2015 the Claimant appealed the Rights Commissioner's Recommendation to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 13(9) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969.A Labour Court hearing took place on the 29th September, 2015.
3. 1. The Claimant is employed as a Driver in Waterways Ireland. He is seeking full retrospection (2006-2013) for the non-payment of a Subsistence Allowance. The allowance in question is payable to staff who are required to be absent from their base in excess of 5 hours.
2. The Union do not accept the argument that the back payments should be limited to the date the issue was raised.
3. The Claimant is seeking to have the same rules apply to his underpayment as would apply where an overpayment was made.
4. 1.It is the Employer's understanding that the original agreement was personal to holder and did not apply to any new employees subsequently recruited.
2. It is the Employer's view that the Claimant received the appropriate "eating on site allowance".
3. It is inappropriate to increase the retrospection to a date before the claim had been made.
The Union submitted an appeal of a Rights Commissioner’s Recommendation on behalf of a worker which concerned a claim for payment of a meal allowance retrospective to the commencement of his employment on 14thAugust 2006 until the date such an allowance was conceded by the employer to the Claimant, i.e. 25thJuly 2013. The Rights Commissioner recommended that the Employer’s offer to pay retrospection should be increased. Accordingly she recommended that the Claimant should be paid the sum of €4,000, arising from the unique circumstances in this case.
Having considered the submissions of both parties to the Union’s appeal the Court is of the view that the Rights Commissioner’s Recommendation is fair and reasonable in the circumstances and upholds her Recommendation to pay the Claimant the sum of €4,000. The Court decides that this sum should be paid in full and final settlement of the claim. Accordingly, the Union’s appeal fails.
The Court so decides.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
15th October, 2015Deputy Chairman
Enquiries concerning this Decision should be addressed to Clodagh O'Reilly, Court Secretary.