Banded Hours Update

Mandate Trade Union has been made aware that some employers are refusing to process Banded Hour Contract requests citing that they only happen at a particular time of the year.

This is not true!

All workers who are not covered by a collective agreement governing “Banded Hours”, which includes Dunnes Stores workers, are entitled to lodge a claim for secure hours provided they have more than 12 months service and have not lodged a claim in the previous 12 months.

If you lodged a claim for a new secure hour contract in February 2021, for instance, you are entitled to lodge a claim now, or at any point in the future. That may mean lodging it in June, if you so wish, or else November. There is no restriction on when you can lodge it.

Applying for a Banded Hour Contract

  • Where an employee’s contract of employment does not reflect the number of hours worked per week, the employee is entitled to be placed in the appropriate band of weekly working hours.
  • The appropriate band is determined having regard to the average number of hours worked by the employee in the relevant 12 month reference period. This number of hours does not include annual leave.
  • An employee who believes that they should be placed in a band of weekly working hours must make a written request to their employer.
BandFromTo
A3 hours6 hours
B6 hours11 hours
C11 hours16 hours
D16 hours21 hours
E21 hours26 hours
F26 hours31 hours
G31 hours36 hours
H36 hours and over

Implementation

  • Refusals may be granted under certain circumstances.
  • However, where an employee’s request is granted, they must be placed in the appropriate band within 4 weeks of the date of the request.
  • An employee who is placed in a band of weekly working hours must work the average hours for that band for a period of at least twelve months.

Penalisation

  • An employer must not penalise or threaten to penalise an employee (changes in hours, demotion, transfer of duties, change of location, reduction in wages, etc)
  • The maximum award that can be made in respect of an act of penalisation is an amount equivalent up to four weeks’ remuneration for the employee concerned.
  • If an employee successfully claims penalisation under the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997, the maximum award is two years’ remuneration.

Compliance

  • Where an employee believes their employer has failed to place them in the appropriate band of weekly working hours, the employee may make a complaint to the Workplace Relations Commission through their Union.
  • A decision of an adjudication officer can require the employer to comply with this section and place the employee on the appropriate band of hours.

Appeals & Enforcement

  • If the employer does not appeal the adjudication officer’s decision, an application can be made to the District Court for enforcement.
  • Either party may appeal a decision of an adjudication officer to the Labour Court.
  • A decision of the Labour Court shall affirm, vary or set aside the decision of the adjudication officer.
  • If the Labour Court affirms the adjudication officer’s decision but the company refuses to implement the changes, an application can be made to the District Court for enforcement.

For more information on banded hours click here.