Monday, 1 February 2010

Dublin terminal set for new strike action

Workers unhappy with arbitrator's ruling

Dock workers at Ireland’s busiest container terminal are set to go back on strike, after an arbitrator failed to resolve their differences with management.

Ruling on the dispute, arbitrator Finbarr Flood said there were three areas of difference between Peel Ports-owned Marine Terminals (MTL) and workers at the Dublin terminal over planned redundancies.

Workers said: “This ruling can in no way be seen as a victory for dockers, and is in no way comprehensive in addressing the issues which led to strike action.”

The strike, which started last July, lasted 111 days, only ended after a resolution was brokered by the Irish Labour Court. This week,, a source close to the dispute said it looked likely that the strike would be back on.

Flood said the workers union Siptu had accepted a proposal by the Labour Court over the severance package, but MTL’s position was that the court recommendation made no mention of the calculation of service in respect of the ex-gratia element of the severance package.

MTL and the union also disagree over employee numbers.

The company argues it needs 27 workers, with two more positions recruited externally, meaning nine compulsory redundancies, The union claims there is no agreement to recruit externally.

It also claims the establishment figure and working hours have not been agreed.

The union is also unhappy with the company’s selection criteria for the redundancies.

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