Council dispute resolved

The long-running dispute between the executive of Roscommon Couny Council and its engineering and outdoor staff appears to have been resolved after the intervention of the Labour Court.

  The row had been festering since January, when some 160 staff threatened to go on strike over proposed changes to their jobs.

  These related to the developments of new municipal districts in Roscommon, Boyle and Athlone to replace the six engineering offices: Boyle, Strokestown, Athlone, Castlerea and Roscommon. Staff objected and an impasse developed.

  The matter was referred to the Labour Relations Commission and then to the Labour Court. Following their input, significant progress has been made in finding a resolution and the staff assumed their new roles last Friday.

  Siptu industrial organiser Anthony McCormack, who represents most of the staff, said: “It is as good as resolved now. Agreement has been reached on a number of issues that were contentious at the time. “We have been into the Labour Court, who gave both sides instructions to engage in a meaningful way about the changes and have them implemented.

  “The changes were implemented on June 12.” Mr McCormack said that the council made some significant allowances which prompted real progress.

  “The council committed to employing up to 15 new outdoor staff,” he said. “A recruitment process will begin shortly.”