DkIT students to receive withheld exam results as industrial action lifted

Michelle O'Keeffe

Reporter:

Michelle O'Keeffe

Email:

michelle.okeeffe@dundalkdemocrat.ie

DkIT students to receive withheld exam results as industrial action lifted

Students at the DkIT are to recieve their exam results which were being withheld due to industrial action at the college.

The Dundalk branch of the TUI said they have been forced to bring the college management to the Labour Court claiming they refused to return to talks at the Work Relations Committe and has rejected a joint referral of the matter to the Labour Court.

The DkIT confirmed that it has written to TUI requesting them to lift the industrial action with immediate effect following the decision made on Monday night by union members to invoke Section 20 of the Industrial Relations Act and their agreement to a binding recommendation from the Labour Court. 

Students are due to be told shortly when they will receive their exam results after the industrial action was lifted.

A DkIT statement said: "Over recent days, the Institute has engaged extensively with the TUI and the Workplace Relations Commission to pursue a joint referral from the WRC Conciliation Service to the Labour Court, which was in the interest of both parties, so that the dispute could be resolved within the State’s industrial relations machinery.

"The Institute welcomes the TUI's willingness to engage with the Labour Court to find a resolution to this dispute via the appropriate legal mechanisms.

"The principal focus of the Institute at this time is ensuring that students will receive their examination results as soon as possible now that the industrial action has been lifted.

"This is a highly unfortunate situation which has been unduly challenging for students.

"The Institute has instigated plans to expedite the process for releasing examination results in order to avoid further disruption and remains committed to ensuring that no student is disadvantaged as result of this action.

"Students will receive communications today advising them on the revised timelines for receiving their examinations results and all support services remain available to the student body at this time."

The TUI said that in an effort to break the impasse and bring the dispute to a swift conclusion the TUI decided to refer the matter to the Labour Court for arbitration by invoking section 20 of the Industrial relations act.

The TUI in a statement corculated to members on Monday night said: "Since the President declared he was disengaging from talks at the WRC the TUI have communicated several times with DkIT Management urging them to return to talks in order to swiftly resolve the current dispute.

"Regrettably the President's office has not indicated an intention to return to talks at the WRC.

"Given this intransigence and the likelihood of a prolonged dispute the TUI communicated to DkIT management last week seeking management’s agreement to have the dispute jointly referred to the Labour Court for arbitration on the outstanding issue of the Terms of Reference.

"The TUI believed given the rising levels of stress and anxiety a prolonged dispute may exert that a swift resolution via joint referral was in the best interests of all parties, particularly students and staff.

"Unfortunately subsequent communications from the Institute did not confirm a willingness to agree to a joint referral on the basis the TUI outlined.

"Therefore the TUI, in order to seek a swift resolution to the current dispute has itself referred the dispute to the Labour Court under section 20 of the Industrial Relations Act.

"This should result in the dispute moving on to the labour court."

The TUI said the industrial action had been taken due to the institute’s executive failing to honour commitments made last year, including the improvement of management bodies and progress in pursuing Technological University status.