Proposals agreed to resolve marriage registrars’ dispute

Management proposals to resolve a dispute, concerning new responsibilities for marriage registrars, were considered and agreed last week by the IMPACT Health and Welfare Divisional Executive (DEC).

The dispute centres around new responsibilities contained in the Civil Registration (Amendement) Act 2014, specifically in relation to so-called ‘sham’ marriages, requiring HSE registrars to identify applications for ‘marriages of convenience’ and to refuse such applications when necessary.

The legislative amendments were introduced in August but without any prior consultation with registrars about the substantial new duties and responsibilities involved. IMPACT advised registrars not to undertake any new duties associated with the legislation.

Independent review

In a letter to management this week, IMPACT assistant general secretary Robbie Ryan sought an early meeting with the agreed independent facilitator and said that the agreement to move forward with the proposals meant that the matter would no longer require a referral to the Labour Court.

The proposals include a commitment to appropriate training for registrars and an independent review of services with agreed terms of reference. In the interim period, the ‘marriage of convenience’ functions will be carried out by the most senior staff available (not below Grade 6), pending the completion and implementation of the review recommendations.

A copy of the proposals is available HERE.

For more news see IMPACT’s latest members’ ebulletin HERE, published 7th December 2015.