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The Luas drivers have voted to accept the Labour Court pay recommendations

The news comes after four months of industrial action

25/5/2016 Luas Trams Source: Leah Farrell

THE STRIKING LUAS drivers have voted to accept Labour Court recommendations of an 18.3% pay hike.

The news comes after almost four months of industrial action on the part of the workers.

The drivers voted this afternoon to accept the recommendations by a margin of 66% to 34%, or 108 votes to 56.

Luas operator Transdev has also elected to accept the recommendation, bringing to an end one of the bitterest industrial disputes in recent Irish history.

“Over recent days all Siptu members employed as Luas drivers were given an opportunity to discuss and debate this Labour Court recommendation. They have now made an informed decision to accept its proposals,” said union representative Owen Reidy.

The workers recognise that this recommendation deals with the reduction of the terms and conditions of new entrants to the Luas driver grade by committing the company to a comprehensive review of this issue within the next 18 months.
The recommendation contains improved terms in relation to the link between productivity and pay increases that will amount to between 15.6% to 18.3% between now and September 2020.

Reidy said that the last few months have seen the Luas drivers “display great resilience” in pursuing improved conditions of employment.

Transdev

“Transdev have given careful consideration to the terms of the Labour Court Recommendation and have agreed to accept it,” the company said in a statement.

“We are pleased with the outcome of the ballot. This vote by employees in favour of the Labour Court Recommendation is positive news,” said managing director Gerry Madden.

As our other 3 grades had previously agreed settlement terms at local level back in April this now brings the dispute to an end.

Acknowledging that a “critical next step” is to rebuild working relationships, Madden said:

“We entered the Labour Court process and all previous talks involving the State’s Industrial Relations institutions in good faith and we believe that the decision to accept the Recommendation is best for our customers, our staff and the long term future of the Luas.”

Terms

Together with an increase of 18.3% in basic pay for the drivers over the course of the next four years the Labour Court has also suggested that an increase in shift length not be introduced, a key issue for the drivers in their rejection of recommendations from the Workplace Relations Commission in March.

Regarding the introduction of lower starting-pay for new recruits, another key issue for the drivers, the Labour Court said that the issue should be revisited within 18 months.

Other recommendations include that a payment of €750 be made up front to the drivers given their bonus for 2016 has been forfeited, and restoration of the 10% salary cut applied by Luas operator Transdev, with all money outstanding to be paid also.

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