SIPTU HAS CALLED an emergency meeting of the union’s Aer Lingus pension committee for tomorrow morning at 11am to discuss an IBEC/Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) five-point-plan aimed at resolving the dispute at the airline.
SIPTU sector organiser, Dermot O’Loughlin, said that in advance of the meeting they are requesting clarification in relation to the IBEC/ICTU five point plan.
IBEC and ICTU said they believe that solutions need to be urgently found to the current difficulties between the parties.
The Group of Unions has issued notice of industrial action to take place on November 19 and IBEC and ICTU said that in order to find an early resolution they have a number of recommendations.
These include that contact be made with both the Group of Unions and the company by the Labour Relations Commission.
Having consulted with the ‘Technical Group’ established by the LRC to assist the talks process and having reviewed all outstanding issues, the Chief Executive of the LRC, should report formally to the parties on the outcome of the discussions held to date and give his assessment of the measures needed to achieve a final resolution of those issues where differences remain.”
They say this report shall be considered by the parties who shall advise the LRC of their positions.
IBEC and ICTU say that where there are outstanding matters on which agreement still has not been reached, the parties should refer them to the Labour Court for interim recommendation.
The recommendation of the Labour Court should then be considered by the LRC ‘Technical Group’, with a view to finalising the design of the new pension arrangements. The outcome will then be considered by the parties in conjunction with their respective stakeholders. Any residual outstanding matters can be referred back to the Labour Court as necessary for final recommendation.
IBEC and ICTU will invite the LRC to proceed with the parties as soon as possible and will remain in close contact with the parties.
Aer Lingus welcomed this proposed re-engagement with the LRC and in particular the proposed consultation with the ‘Technical Group’ of actuarial and legal advisors.
Aer Lingus said it will participate in the structure of re-engagement proposed by IBEC and ICTU on a voluntary and non-binding basis.
Aer Lingus remains focused on achieving a fair outcome that improves the pension prospects of affected members of IASS in a way that will balance the interests of all parties, including Aer Lingus employees and shareholders. As part of that outcome, Aer Lingus is seeking employment cost stability over the coming years. Any new arrangements put in place by Aer Lingus to improve the pension prospects of affected members of IASS, will therefore be linked to the strength of the commitment to stabilise employment costs.
Aer Lingus also welcomed the IBEC and ICTU recommendation that the Union groups withdraw the notice of industrial action against Aer Lingus.
IMPACT, the largest trade union in Aer Lingus, welcomed the ICTU/IBEC intervention in the dispute over pensions in the company and confirmed that it was ready to attend further talks in the Labour Relations Commission and Labour Court.