High Court grants injunction over Greyhound waste dispute
Company says it regrets unofficial industrial action by collection crews in Dublin
Staff at Greyhound claim they have been locked out by the company in a dispute over pay. Photograph: David Sleator/The Irish Times
The High Court has granted a temporary injunction preventing workers blocking trucks entering and leaving a premises of a waste disposal company that collects 110,000 household’s bins in Dublin.
The court heard the workers placed a blockade outside Greyhound Recycling’s depot in Clondalkin, Dublin as part of a dispute with their employer over pay.
The company claims the unofficial action is illegal and sought the orders after one person was injured after being struck by a bin lorry.
Today at the High Court Mr Justice Max Barrett granted the company a temporary injunction preventing sixty
Greyhound employees, the trade union Siptu (which represents Greyhound’s workers) and anyone who has notice of the orders from interfering with access and egress from the plant.
The order was granted on an ex parte basis (where only one side was represented in court).
The matter was adjourned to Thursday of this week. Earlier the judge remarked after viewing video footage of the protest that the workers’ actions seemed “perfectly peaceful”.
Seeking the injunctions , barrister Louis McEntaggart BL for Greyhound said the blockade commenced at Greyhound’s depot early this morning when workers stood in front of lorries trying to enter and leave the facility at Knockmitten Lane, Clondalkin.
Cars were parked in a manner that was hindering bin trucks from getting in and out of the facility, counsel said.
Greyhound has a contract to collected 110,000 bins per week from households in Dublin.
As a result of the blockade, which the company says is unlawful and were contrary to the 1990 Industrial Relations Act, no collections were made today, he said.
Drivers of the bin lorries who attempted to get in and out of the depot were subject to intimidation by the protesters, counsel said.
The company had a major concern about health and safety. Already one person involved in the blockade was injured after being struck by a truck, counsel said Counsel said it also had concerns that what was occurring has been “mischaracterised” on social media.
The dispute had been called a lock out of workers on Facebook. Counsel said this was not the case, and that any employee who wished to return to work was perfectly entitled to do so.
Counsel said the workers action has arisen in a dispute over workers pay. It is accepted there is a trade dispute between Greyhound and its employees on the issue, which had gone before both the Labour Court and the Labour Relations Committee, counsel said.
Workers had held a meeting about the company’s restructuring plans last weekend. The company did not know the outcome of that meeting. While industrial action was on the agenda at the meeting Greyhound was not given any prior notice of any industrial action.