Dispute at Central Bank over new hours
Three-person tribunal will meet today to try to resolve issues over extra hours
The Central Bank in Dame Street, Dublin. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh
A dispute has emerged between the Central Bank of Ireland and about 1,250 staff over a plan to increase their working time to 37 hours a week.
At present about 500 of these employees work just 32 hours a week.
A three-person tribunal will meet today to try to resolve the issues relating to the implementation of the additional working hours which affect the professional and administrative grades in the bank.
It is understood that these surround the implementation of the increased hours and its impact on issues such as flexitime.
The tribunal comprises one representative from each of the Central Bank and trade union Unite, and an independent chairman.
Commenting on the dispute, a spokesman for the Central Bank said: “As we are currently in process it is not appropriate to outline any further detail on the substantive issues in dispute.”
The application of the Haddington Road agreement to Central Bank technical and general grades, most of whom are located at its currency production unit in Sandyford and who work 39 hours per week, is the subject of discussions under a separate process with the unions representing staff in those grades, the spokesman added.
Separately, it has emerged that 570 staff at the Central Bank suffered pay cuts of up to 10 per cent on July 1st. These mirrored cuts imposed on other public servants by the Government under the Haddington Road deal. These applied to staff earning over €65,000 a year and ranged from 5.5 per cent to 10 per cent.
The changes to pay rates and work practices are part of a process by the financial regulator to introduce reforms similar to those that apply to public servants under the Haddington Road agreement.
Although a State entity, the Central Bank is not covered by the agreement. However, it has been subjected to other government-imposed cuts since the economic crash in 2008, such as the pension levy.
The Central Bank employed 1,394 staff at the end of 2012. Its annual report states that total staff expenses rose by €2.7 million in the year to €106.3 million.