IBRC staff consider industrial action over severance deal

100 or so workers left in defunct bank are unhappy with compensation package on offer

The Statue outside Connaught House on Burlington Road where the offices of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation IBRC formerly Anglo Irish Bank are.Photograph: Alan Betson / Irish Times

The Statue outside Connaught House on Burlington Road where the offices of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation IBRC formerly Anglo Irish Bank are.Photograph: Alan Betson / Irish Times

 

Lower-paid staff at the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC) have told their union they may consider industrial action in an effort to secure a better severance package.

Efforts to broker a redundancy deal for the 100 or so workers left in the defunct bank have so far faltered.

The employees - many of whom earn in the region of €30,000 a year - are set to lose their jobs when the bank fully winds down.

Before the Government’s decision to liquidate the bank in February last year, staff were offered four weeks’ pay per year of service, including statutory redundancy.

They are now being offered only the legal minimum entitlement of two weeks - less than half of the former terms.

Last October, chief executive of the Labour Relations Commission Kieran Mulvey was called in to broker a deal between the parties involved, including the special liquidator, Nama and the Department of Finance.

However, he has so far been unable to forge an agreement amenable to all sides.

As a result, staff who are represented by the Irish Bank Officials Association (IBOA) voted this week to give the union a mandate to continue its campaign for fair compensation which may include industrial action if the issue is not resolved.

IBOA general secretary Larry Broderick said staff were dismayed that mediation efforts have so far failed to receive sufficient support.

“The employees’ previous redundancy terms which had been signed off by the Department of Finance at the end of 2011 were withdrawn in an instant when IBRC was liquidated in an all-night sitting of the Oireachtas in February 2013 as part of the Government’s strategy to address the promissory notes issue,” he said.

“Considering the enormous sums of money involved in working out the IBRC loan book and in view of the very substantial fees being paid to the army of accountants, lawyers and consultants involved in the liquidation of the company, it is totally unacceptable that the current impasse cannot be broken to provide modest compensation for this group of low-paid workers who have performed vital work for the State in ensuring that the assets to be sold by the liquidator have been maintained,” he said.