Published: 08/03/2011

The Dublin Labour Court has recommended that five SIPTU members removed from the payroll of the Davenport Hotel in Dublin for refusing to accept a cut in their minimum wage should be reinstated and their previous pay rate restored.

The Court also recommended that the five women who work at the hotel cleaning rooms and changing linen be fully compensated for what they would have earned had they not been removed from the work roster in early February (see (Ireland: hotel workers in battle to defend minimum wage)..

The Labour Court found unjustified the company’s claim that the reduction in hourly pay from €8.65 to €7.79 was necessary to sustain jobs, as they had provided no financial or other information to back this up. The Court also said that the company should have provided staff with all relevant information necessary to make an informed decision on the proposed pay cut and that they should have been given a reasonable period of time to take advice on the matter.

SIPTU Organiser Pat Ward welcomed the decision, calling it a vindication of the courageous stand taken by the workers who placed pickets on the O’Callaghan Davenport hotel for several days in February. “This is a great outcome for the workers concerned and for SIPTU. The five women displayed real courage in resisting severe pressure from their employer to take a cut in their minimum wage level. Hopefully, their success will serve to demonstrate to other employers of similar disposition the resolve of our members and of this Union to protect and defend the interests of low paid workers.”

SIPTU has expressed its thanks to the IUF and the many thousands of people who responded to our action alert by sending e-mail messages to the Davenport in support of these courageous trade unionists.