Workers at a water treatment plant in Co Dublin have gone on strike after management failed to refer a dispute relating to pay and shift premium payments to the Labour Court. The strike began at Shanganagh Waste Water Treatment Plant at 6.30am today, following a unanimous vote by Siptu members in favour of such action on April 25th.
Following the vote, management and staff attended two conciliation meetings at the Labour Relations Commission, but no progress was made with regard to the issues of pay and shift premium payments.
The facility treats water for domestic and commercial purposes for 248,000 people living in Dublin and Wicklow.
Siptu sector organiser Martin Meere said: “Our members were prepared to lift the strike action on referral of the outstanding issues to the Labour Court for an early hearing. Unfortunately the employers have declined to take up this offer leaving the workers with no option but to commence industrial action.”
Workers at the plant are employed by ICDS Constructors Ltd. Simon Lee, a director at the agency, said he was surprised by the news as an agreement to avoid strike action was reached last week.
“We’ve heard nothing from the union … The whole thing is news to us for the moment, we’re seeking clarity,” Mr Lee stated.
Plant worker Jeff Jones said none of the staff had ever been involved in industrial action before.
“We are working a 24-hour, 52 weeks a year shift pattern, including public holidays, for a rate applied to day workers. All we are seeking is fair pay for the hours and shifts that we work,” he added.
Shanganagh Waste Water Treatment Plant is run by SDD Shanganagh Water Treatment Ltd under a contract with Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. Source: The Irish Times