policies and procedures
1. It is the policy to endeavour to make every effort to resolve issues at local level by discussions and negotiations between the University (as represented by the Director of HR) and the Services Industrial Professional Technical Union (as represented by the Senior Shop Stewards and/or Branch Secretary/Assistant Branch Secretary).
2. Substantive or urgent disputes relating to salaries and other general conditions of employment shall in the first instance be the subject of direct negotiations between the University (as represented by the Director of HR) and the Services Industrial Professional Technical Union (as represented by the Senior Shop Stewards and/or Branch Secretary/Assistant Branch Secretary).
3. Disputes arising from individual or group grievances shall be dealt with through the procedure set out in the Grievance Procedure. A matter which remains in dispute under the Grievance Procedure shall be the subject of direct negotiations between the University and the Union, each side being represented on the basis set out in the paragraph 2 above.
4. Disputes arising from disciplinary matters shall be dealt with through the Disciplinary Procedure. A matter which remains in dispute under the Disciplinary Procedure shall be the subject of further direct negotiations between the University and the Union, each side being represented on the basis set out in paragraph 2 above.
5. Disputes arising from the Consultation Procedures shall be dealt with through the agreed procedures. A matter which remains in dispute under the Consultation Procedure shall be the subject of direct negotiations between the University and the Union, each side being represented on the basis set out in paragraph 2 above.
6. If a dispute is not resolved at 2, 3, 4 or 5 above, the matter shall be the subject of further direct negotiations between the University and the Union.
7. If, in respect of any dispute the parties fail to reach agreement as a result of direct negotiations between them and either party wishes to pursue the matter further, the part shall refer the dispute either to the Conciliation service of the Labour Court, or other such mutually agreed body, in which event both parties agree to participate in Conciliation. In the event that the matter is referred to the Conciliation service of the Labour Court both parties agree to participate in Conciliation. In the event that the parties are unable to agree a mutually acceptable body within seven days then the Conciliation services of the Labour court shall be invoked.
8. It is the firm intention of the parties to this Agreement to make every effort to reach agreement on all disputes either through direct negotiation or through Conciliation as provided for above and to handle all issues arising between them fairly and expeditiously. If however, despite their best efforts a particular dispute remains unsettled, and either party wishes to pursue the matter further, the matter will be referred on the basis of a joint request, to a full hearing of the Labour Court.Where an issue is referred to the Labour Court to aid resolution, and where such referral results in a full Labour Court hearing, it is normally expected that the subsequent Labour Court Recommendation would be accepted by both the University and the Union. It is also recognised that, where local negotiations and the Conciliation Service of the Labour Court fail to satisfactorily resolve an issue, and where both parties agree, the issue may be referred in the normal way to a full hearing of the Labour Court and the subsequent recommendation should be binding on both the University and the Union. However, both parties must specifically agree to this process prior to the full Labour Court hearing.
A decision by the Union to pursue any form of industrial action is an extremely serious decision and efforts will be made by both the Union and the University to resolve disputes through local discussions and negotiations. However, any decision to take industrial action, of any sort, must be in accordance with the procedures contained within this agreement. No industrial action of any kind will be pursued by the Union, its members or the University on any issue until the full procedures contained within this agreement have been fully exhausted. Where the issue in dispute directly concerns or relates to one individual or to one group or sub-section of members a decision to reject a Labour Court Recommendation or University offer and take subsequent industrial action must be first decided upon by this specific group or sub-section of members through a secret ballot vote. Where the issue concerns only one individual the decision to reject the recommendation or offer and to pursue industrial action will be taken by the sub-section this individual is a member of. The issues of rejecting a Labour Court Recommendation and taking industrial action must be taken by two separate secret ballot votes. Following this procedure, and where it is intended to involve more than one sub-section in the industrial action, each sub-section will be balloted through a secret ballot vote.
Industrial action by those sub-sections will only take place where a majority of those balloted indicate by secret ballot vote support for such action. Where the issue in dispute directly concerns the entire membership and there is no unique or specific sub-section interest, and where it is intended to involve the entire membership a secret ballot vote of all members must be held. The Union may decide in balloting the entire membership to ballot each Union section separately to identify the degree of support for the industrial action. Full industrial action by the entire membership may only take place where a majority of the entire membership so indicate by secret ballot vote. If the decision emerges to take industrial action, and once this is authorised by the Executive Committee of the Union, 14 days notice in writing of the intended action will be given to the Director of HR, and this will not be served until 14 days after the date of the issue of the Labour Court Recommendation. The Union shall ensure that its members will not take action in support of any strike, sitdown, stay in or slowdown, or other work stoppage arranged and/or conducted by another Union or any organisation other than a dispute legally and officially recognised by itself. It is recognised by both parties that any staff member instigating or taking part in any unofficial stoppage or action is open to disciplinary procedure by both the Union and the University, which may include termination of employment.
In the event of any unofficial action taking place, the Union Branch Secretary and the local Union representative will do everything possible to end the action and secure a full return to normal work pending the resolution of any grievance, in line with the agreed procedures set out in this agreement. Grievances pertaining to the unofficial work stoppage will not be processed until those involved return to work.