ADJUDICATION OFFICER DECISION
Adjudication Decision Reference: ADJ-00004941
Complaint(s)/Dispute(s) for Resolution:
Complaint/Dispute Reference No.
Date of Receipt
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969
Date of Adjudication Hearing: 07/02/2017
Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Joe Donnelly
In accordance with Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969, following the referral of the dispute to me by the Director General, I inquired into the dispute and gave the parties an opportunity to be heard by me and to present to me any evidence relevant to the dispute.
Complainant’s Submission and Presentation:
The complainant had a number of issues regarding conditions in the workplace. These issues included having to operate defective / untaxed vehicles, not being supplied with appropriate safety clothing, safety concerns not being addressed, not getting entitlement to breaks or lunch-hours and not being issued with a contract of employment. These grievances led to the complainant withdrawing his labour until these matters were addressed by the respondent. When the respondent did not address the issues the complainant felt that he had no choice but to request his P45 form. The complainant did not receive this form nor did he receive holiday money that he was due.
Respondent’s Submission and Presentation:
The respondent’s business is conducted in accordance with all proper standards of health and safety, road safety and in accordance with employment law generally.
The complainant was requested to have a discussion with a Director when he raised these issues but he failed to do so. The complainant has not made any effort to deal with the issues internally.
The respondent has a standard contract of employment which the complainant is welcome to review.
The complainant has been fully paid his entitlements to date and there are no outstanding wages due to him.
Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969, requires that I make a recommendation to the parties to the dispute.
It was agreed by the parties that the name of the respondent be changed.
The complainant was employed as a truck driver by the respondent on a full-time basis. He commenced employment on 21 May 2016 and his last day of employment was on 5 August 2016.
It would appear that the complainant had a number of issues with regard to his employment with the respondent. Some were related to working conditions and others to deficiencies in relation to the trucks that the complainant drove for the respondent. Some of these faults were mechanical and others related to problems regarding road tax. A main area of contention according to the complainant was in relation to lunch breaks. He stated that he was very often not afforded an hour for lunch although he never got paid for the hour that he was supposed to take lunch.
The respondent, although he denied many of the allegations, did not maintain records in regard to working hours and breaks and had not issued the complainant with a statement of his terms and conditions of employment. These are serious breaches of employment legislation but are not before me as such. The complainant, for his part, ceased attending work and sent the respondent a text saying that he was ‘on strike’ unless conditions improved. Attempts to set up a meeting between the parties failed and eventually after further exchanges by text the respondent’s director stated that he felt that they could no longer work together and therefore would forward to the complainant his P45 and any holiday money due. This was only issued a week before the hearing.
This, as requested by the complainant, is an investigation of a trade dispute under Section 13 0f the Industrial Relations Act 1969. In that context I recommend that the respondent pay the complainant the sum of €800.00 in full and final settlement of this dispute.
Dated: 25th July 2017