Labour Court directs parties to return to LRC talks on sleepover duty

The Labour Court has directed unions and employers to return to talks in the LRC, aimed at resolving issues around ‘sleepover’ hours in residential care. The Labour Court gave the instruction today (Thursday) at a scheduled hearing on the issue. Unions took the case to the Labour Court because of HSE management’s failure to deal with excessive sleepover demands on staff in residential care facilities.

National secretary Louise O’Donnell explained, “The court has directed all parties to return to the LRC in order to try and resolve the issues, with a view to reaching an agreement no later than May 31st 2014.”

IMPACT and Siptu have said that the HSE and the other voluntary employers are in breach of Irish and EU working time legislation, and that many staff are expected to work 63-hour weeks at a minimum. Commenting on the issue last November, Ms O’Donnell said “There appears to be no effective limit on pay costs for chief executives. Meanwhile managers order staff to work as many as seven sleepovers a fortnight, in flagrant breach of Irish and EU working time laws, for the princely sum of €3 an hour after tax.”