The Union is concerned to see a deal of both misinformed and misleading information being circulated on this matter.
1. The Working Party established to look at the T.E.P. issue has not reached an agreed position. Its report when released will show agreement on all issues except the one-off access to a T.E.P. for those employed at 1996 who did not have this option given to them.
2. The Union’s position regarding T.E.Ps is clear and unambiguous. Successive Union Conferences have firstly established and reconfirmed a Union Policy opposing T.E.Ps. The Union’s position is therefore simply put as, if you want to receive the Employer’s Superannuation subsidy, you must be a member of the Superannuation Scheme.
All Union officials are bound by Conference decisions. Union officials have no ability to unilaterally vary Conference established Policy.
3. On the integration of CSTs in 2001, the Employment Agreement that effected this was ratified by the membership overwhelmingly.
This Collective Agreement contained the “grand-fathering” provision that permitted ex CSTs who were receiving a T.E.P. to continue receiving one.
This aspect of the proposed settlement was no secret. The Union Newsletter that detailed the proposed settlement explicitly outlined this aspect of the settlement.
The proposed settlement of 2003 was again overwhelmingly ratified by the membership and included a continuation of this “grand-fathering” provision.
Whatever “discrimination” currently occurs therefore is not the result of any negotiation, but is the outcome of ratification meetings of members. A vote of the membership is the only policy-making forum that is superior to Conference decisions.
4. The issue that is being re-raised – that of claimed discrimination – has previously been argued before the Employment Relations Authority. In a decision in February 2004, the Authority rejected that claim.
5. The timeframe for appealing that decision has now well expired. A copy of that decision is attached.
6. Any re-raising of the issue would be through normal employment law processes i.e. Mediation, Employment Relations Authority, Employment Court, Court of Appeal.
7. Any implementation of any changes, whatever they may be, to the present arrangements regarding the provision of T.E.Ps, will require ratification by Union members.
8. The anomaly created in 1996 was not created by the Union. The Union was not involved at all.
9. It is also unfortunate that there are a few members who, for whatever reason, decided themselves not to join the Superannuation Scheme.
That they now find themselves comparing their circumstances with members who have $200,000 in a Superannuation Account and they have nothing, is solely a matter for their own reflection.