Management and unions came away from the Labour Court on Tuesday with the recommendation that the proposed redundancy payment of three weeks pay per year of service on top of statutory and capped at 72 weeks be increased to four weeks per year of service, plus statutory with a ceiling of 78 weeks.
A union spokesperson confirmed to The Clare Champion that the meeting was being convened to discuss the directive but they would be seeking “some clarification from the court in relation to aspects of the recommendation”.
Ironically, the meeting will be held on the day the company had indicated was the final day for agreement to be reached on the sustainability plan. Failure to do so, they emphasised, would lead the company to revert back to the original plan which involved the loss of 370 jobs and the ending of all manufacturing and distribution at the Shannon plant.
The company confirmed that Thursday’s deadline “still stands” while a union official stressed that “we will be available to talk with the company following the general meeting”.
The Labour Court recommendation follows failed talks with IBEC and the Irish Congress of Trade Unions on proposals contained in the survival plan. Unions were unhappy with the terms proposed. They have issues in relation to shift work and the fact that workers who accepted the voluntary package were given six weeks in addition to statutory for every year of service.
Management has described the sustainability plan as a viable alternative to the original plan announced by the executive to wind down operations in Shannon with the loss of 370 jobs.
The plan, they say, provides for the retention of 163 high-value jobs, the continuation of manufacturing operations across all business units and the distribution of product from Shannon to their global customer base.