Tesco Ireland Keeps Stores Open As Strike Continues
Tesco Ireland has released a statement that it will continue to keep stores open today (15 February), even though strike action over a contract dispute continues at eight of its stores.
Calling the strike by Mandate Trade Union members 'unjustified', the company said sales were strong across all stores on the first day of the strike on Valentine's Day.
Staff carrying banners with phrases such as 'Fighting for decent jobs and fairness' picketed outside stores across Ireland on Tuesday.
Reiterating that it was 'deeply disappointed' by the strike, Tesco Ireland again called on Mandate to accept the Labour Court recommendation over the disputed contracts.
"Mandate’s action is a retrograde step for the industrial relations processes of the State which it undermines. The Labour Court Recommendation is the only solution to this dispute. We would like to assure everyone that we have done everything we can to resolve this issue fairly for all involved," Tesco Ireland said in the statement.
At the time of publication, Mandate had not replied to the statement.
Labour Court Recommendation
The strike initially resulted from Mandate's claim that Tesco Ireland was trying to push through changes to contracts without agreement for roughly 250 employees who were hired before 1996.
The matter had gone before the Labour Court, resulting in a recommendation released in November 2016. The proposed resolution would see the rate of pay protected (with 90% of affected workers seeing a pay rise, protection of two-thirds of guaranteed overtime, along with other concessions), or the offer of a voluntary redundancy, with an average payout of €105,000.
However, the union said the revamped contract would force some workers to receive pay cuts of 15%. The employees wish to maintain their pre-1996 contracts.
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Karen Henderson. Click subscribe to sign up for ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine