Committee Reports::Interim Report - Aer Lingus::05 July, 1994::Appendix

Appendix III

Submission from the Aer Lingus Craft Group of Unions

For the atention of each Craft Worker within TEAM Aer Lingus


As you are aware, over the past number of weeks, commencing on the 11th February, 1994, continuing discussion has taken place with Management covering ten specific items they required addressed, in respect to their plan to secure the necessary transfer of the £25 Million allocated for Team, in the context of the Cahill Plan which is presently being withheld from Team.

In direct negotiations with Management, the Craft Union Negotiating Team secured the basis of agreement on all of the specific items put forward by Management. It was that fact, that allowed for the following statement, made public at 3.45 a.m. Wednesday morning the 2nd March, 1994.

“Both parties confirm an agreement in principle has been achieved and are committed to meet again on the 2nd March, 1994.

Subject to final verification the agreement will be signed and subsequently recommended by the Group of Unions to their members in a secret ballot.”

The Media covered the joint statements on the 2nd March to the effect that the crisis at Team Aer Lingus was averted, as Management was satisfied that with the verification of the agreement achieved with the Craft Unions, the criteria necessary for the survival of the Company could be met in full to secure the injection of the £25m essential for Team’s future.

That statement concurred with the Craft Unions negotiators view in the matter, as apart from the ten specific items tabled by Management, the Union side put forward two specific items both of which were accepted by Management as having merit.

One of those items was the Unions’ Documentation on “Realising the Potential” originally presented to the Company in October, 1993 without any formal response.

The other item was related to the fact that before going into negotiations the Union side was aware that out of the proposed Redundancies in the Cahill Plan for Team, 153 out of 250 had already been achieved, leaving a shortfall of 97 still to be taken up.

Being aware also that the other groupings within Team while involved in a negotiating process, were nowhere near as advanced as the Crafts were. Consequently, the Craft Union side saw no legitimate reason why the 83 were not brought forward for immediate release and facilitated under the terms provided for in the Cahill Plan, out of the funding that is on hand to release 97.

The foregoing was the basis of the second specific item the Union side put to Management.

In doing so, the Union side informed Management, that apart altogether from the implicit value contained in the measures agreed, to meet Management requirements on their ten specific items addressed, which can only be subject to quantification subsequently.

The Union side were satisfied, that the effect of their proposal, to immediately release the 83 Craftworkers would provide sufficient savings in operational costs, when added to the accrued savings to date pertinent to the Craftworkers, and coupled with the realised saving from the 153 already departed from Team, would meet the required savings of £14 million as a conservative minimum, those figures could be demonstrated and proven as a correct calculation and should allow the release of the £25 million from the parent Company.

However, when the Craft Union side met Management as arranged in the afternoon of Wednesday, 2nd March, rather than proceeding to verify what had been agreed as the basis of our agreement made public, the Union side was confronted with Management tabling proposals to cut overtime Rates, compensation for Working/Resting on Bank Holiday, Shift/R.D.A. payment, increments and a Pay Freeze. In the circumstances the Union side were perturbed to say the least and adequately conveyed their feelings to Management in that regard. Management called a recess to consider what had been said and their position ins respect to same, before leaving the room Management was handed a document containing the Unions formal position on each of the items covered as the basis of the agreement achieved and announced.

Following a long recess the Management side came back and tabled the singular issue of a Pay Freeze.

The Unions initial response was that the question of a Pay Freeze applying to us was not relevant to these discussions, it could be deferred to later as our members next National Wage Adjustment was not due until July, we were made aware then that their Pay Freeze would apply, if agreed, retrospectively.

A further long recess took place, at that stage two members of the Union Negotiating Team were sent down to see Management to ascertain what was going on, taking into account the fact that we had come this afternoon specifically to verify exactly what had already been agreed as the basis of the agreement achieved between us at around 3.00 a.m. that very morning.

Management suggested that we adjourn until 2 p.m. the following day Thursday, 3rd March, to allow them an opportunity to examine in detail the document the Union side unexpectedly presented them with, that afternoon. Under normal circumstances that seemed a reasonable suggestion, however, the Management team was politely advised that we had no intention of leaving until we had a definitive answer to the question, ‘Had we or had we not achieved in principle the basis of an Agreement?’. Management seemed to have considerable difficulty coming to terms with that question, and required time to consider what had been said.

Relatively shortly after that a process of meetings between both sides took place in which clarification and explanations were sought and given on the various items that had been agreed and it did appear management were endeavouring to expand some of those items.

During a long recess in which a number of peculiar happenings took place, a request from John Behan to see two of the Unions Negotiating team was received and acceded to.

When the two met Mr. Behan he wanted to know what was going on, he was answered with the same question being put to him, particularly taking into account the clear understanding we had left each other with exactly 24 hours earlier. On reflection he accepted that an unacceptable misunderstanding had developed between us in which we all probably contributed in one way or another, however, he wanted to advise us he had no difficulty whatsoever re-affirming that we did have the basis of agreement between us, subject to the verification and documentation of same. In the circumstances and with the view of re-establishing a proper climate to conclude our business it was suggested to Mr. Behan that he should recommence discussions and explain that position to the Unions full Negotiating Team.

Mr. Behan readily took up the suggestion and came in, explained and confirmed his position in the matter of an agreement being achieved, following which all members of the Negotiating Team shook his hand, time being about 5.30 a.m. it was agreed that we would take the rest of the day off agreeing to meet Friday morning, 10.00 a.m. to commence the verification and documentation of the agreement achieved.

“Morning Ireland”, Thursday, 3rd March covered progress at Team Aer Lingus to the effect that both sides were going through a process of verification which would take a considerable length of time to conclude as the agreement is quite complex. By Monday, 7th March, verification and documentation was basically concluded other than Management wanted to expand on the Approval issue and re-introduce the Pay Freeze issue stating it was an essential element of the Survival Plan.

The Unions Negotiating Team formally advised Management that in their view there was no reason why the business of verifying the agreement between us was not concluded this evening as it was of vital importance that we return to our membership to inform them of what the factual position is between us.

On the two outstanding issues between us, Approvals and Pay Freeze, Management wanted us to have a detailed explanation of the developments in the approvals area. A Mr. Buggy would be prepared to give an over-view first thing in the morning, this the Union Negotiating Team agreed to.

On the question of a Pay Freeze again re-introduced, the Union Negotiating Team again made the position quite clear, in doing so they wanted Management to understand that this was the first occasion that this Negotiating Group has had the question of a Pay Freeze put to them as a proposal, and the Pay Freeze as outlined is unacceptable in concept. Having made that point the Negotiating Team also made it quite clear that it was not their intention to make any claim on the Company but were reserving the right, when deemed appropriate of doing so, using, at that stage, if necessary, the agreed procedures in the process. In the meantime, the Company should consider the monies due to our membership which were unilaterally withheld and presently being enjoyed as an alleviation for the Company as a loan to be called on.

The Negotiating Team also advised Management in the context of a normal suggested pay freeze, we were prepared to give an assurance that we would not serve any claim in respect to National Wage Awards prior to July, 1995. In other words we would impose upon ourselves a pay pause as against the Management proposed Pay Freeze which was worded exactly as follows:


A General pay freeze will apply until July, 1995. This general pay freeze applies to National Pay Awards and increments due.

The monies which would have been due then will not be carried forward as a debt, nor will those monies retrospectively due be carried forward as a debt.”

Tuesday, March 8th, following the presentation made to us by Mr. Buggy, on Approvals, which we found both informative and enlightening, the Negotiating Team were satisfied their oringinal response to Management on this question was more than appropriate. In thanking Mr. Buggy for his presentation, he assured us he was available, if required, for any further clarification in the matter.

The Negotiating Team then carefully considered the developments to date and decided that they would ask the Management Team, accompanied by Mr. Behan, to be available to them at their earliest convenience.

When the Management Team arrived, we formally advised them that in our view, the necessary verification of the Agreement had concluded and on the question of Approvals, we were more than satisfied with the presentation given to us by Mr. Buggy and were more convinced than ever, that our first position as stated to the Company was the approriate one and that we would like Management to include our statement as part of the verified document.

In respect to the Pay Freeze, our position is as already put, that is, we would impose a Pay Pause on ourselves, as against Managements’ proposal, as explained, of a Pay Freeze.

These two issues being concluded we respectfully requested Management to conclude the documentation of the full verified Agreement, for reference to our members in a Secret Ballot.

The Company recessed at that stage and responded by way of letter, indicating that the Pay Freeze as outlined to us, was a substantial and fundamental element of the Survival Plan, without this element of the package being agreed, there could be no injection of the £25 Million essential for Teams future.

The letter went on to request the Negotiating Team to reconsider their position on the matter and inform the Company of their acceptance of the Pay Freeze.

After long consideration, the Negotiating Team called back the Management Team and formally advised them of their intention to go back to the membership with the verified terms of the Agreement achieved, in these direct negotiations, and have them accepted by the Membership and implemented as their significant contribution to the survival of Team Aer Lingus and committed to fulfilling any of the undertakings given in the terms of that Agreement.

The Negotiating Team will also be putting the Pay Pause, as explained, as an alternative to the Company’s proposed Pay Freeze.

Accordingly, the attached documentation is the verified Agreement as documented by the Company and reproduced by the Unions Negotiating Team.

The Unions Negotiating Team are unanimously recommending the terms of the Proposed Agreement, as documented, for favourable consideration and, if accepted, immediate implementation, implicit in this acceptance would be the acceptance of the Pay Pause as explained.

Following the mass meeting, at which the contents of this documentation will be discussed and clarified, a Secret Ballot will take place through the respective Unions, for an Aggregate Result, over a following number of days.

3 March 1994

Mr Frank O’Reilly

General Secretary

for and on behalf all Trades Unions

representing Craftworkers

in TEAM Aer Lingus

Dear Mr O’Reilly


The attached draft document is the basis of our agreement on the changes necessary to meet the needs of the Survival Plan.

Management may in the future pursue any of these items which we have not reached agreement on in these negotiations.

Yours sincerely

John Mooney

Aircraft Overhaul Manager


In order to meet customers needs the following will apply:


The majority of work patterns in TEAM can be achieved through Article 9 of the Tradesmens’ Agreement.


1)In Aircraft Overhaul Normal 2 cycle shift Monday - Friday to continue per Tradesmens’ Agreement but this does not preclude full implementation of Article 9 where the operation dictates.

2)Extraordinary shifts to meet specific tasks will be met by the collective responsibility of the Aircraft Overhaul Craftsmen, administered by Aircraft Overhaul Management, under the following conditions:

a)Notice of one month will be given where sufficient information is available. Otherwise in exceptional circumstances 10 days notice will be given.

b)Where cancellation or delay takes place this special arrangement can be delayed or cancelled.

c)Minimum time one week, where tasks are scheduled for four weeks or more crews assigned to those tasks will rotate fortnightly.

d)Rostering arrangements will have to take account of shift patterns before and after night duty.

e)This special arrangement will cover Monday to Friday inclusive 8 or 10 hour night shifts.

f)Permanent night RDA allowance and Saturday supplement will apply when applicable.

g)This arrangement will cover mod programmes, ‘C’ Checks and upwards.

h)Fair distribution of night work across the Aircraft Overhaul Craftsmen shall be ensured within the administrative procedures.

i)Current voluntary arrangements can cease and berenegotiated if required, as per agreement.



1.The requirement to match the work force to the Operational schedule will be addressed in full accordance with Article 9 of the Tradesmens’ Agreement.

2.Local discussion will take place on items not covered under Article 9.

3.The reduction of manpower required in the plan shall be in accordance with the agreement on deployment (reference ‘c’).

4.Current voluntary arrangements can cease and be renegotiated if required as per agreement.


1.Total integration takes place of all AME/SME (Mechanical) and AME/SME (Avionic) to give two categories of Craftworker AME (Mechanical’) and AME (Avionic). Craftworkers will perform any task within his group providing he is trained to do so. This training may take the form of on the job training. Additional training arising from this clause will be determined by Management and reflected in training schedules.

2.Craftworkers with Approvals will perform to the full extent of those approvals within the Tradesmens’ Agreement.

3.It is agreed that from here on in that all qualified AMEs Mechanical / Avionic on Line Maintenance shall be required to carry out the following defined functions as and when

the operation requires:

PDIs / Dailies


Idle engine runs

Avionic tasks up to full extent of approvals.

Further definition of overlap will be achieved in local discussions.

4.Person to person communications equipment required in the course of duty will be used by Craftworkers.

5.Should the discussions taking place between the Operative Group and Management reach agreement on the items referred to under this heading the Craft Unions are prepared to discuss the outcome.

6.Further to that, and with a view of reducing operational costs and providing an opportunity for deployment into the craft discipline for a limited number of existing TEAM Aer Lingus employees the Craft Unions are prepared to accommodate that in further discussions.

7.Equipment will not form restrictions to total integration in the context of separate AME (Mechanical) and AME (Avionic). Local discussion to bring this about shall take place on the use of the spray gun.

8.The Company undertakes to examine all out-sourcing with a view to bringing as much work as possible in-house which can be undertaken on a commercial and viable basis. This will involve consultation in a non Industrial Relations forum with those staff involved.


In order to respond to business needs the following will apply:

(a)Full mobility within and between units.

(b)Transfer of a temporary nature to meet business needs.

(c)Transfer of a permanent nature will take place as per current practices taking into account seniority, coverage etc. following consultation.

(d)Where lists exist, Management will have an input taking into account business requirements and suitability. Full consultation and discussion will take place on problem issues.

(e)Temporary Transfers to Support Units will take place on a voluntary basis.


1.Annual leave entitlements will remain as is.

2.All leave including lieu time will be planned and applied for; the granting of leave will be at the discretion of Management which will be authorised to suit the operation and the employee within agreements.

3.The granting of Leave at specific times not reflected in the leave plan is at Managements’ discretion.


The alteration in regard to this matter and the implications involved with the proposed part-approvals etc. have only recently been brought to the attention of the Craft Group, full discussions, deliberations and consultations with their members are required. Also in its proportion to the difficulties which have to be addressed presently, the Craft Group request to Management to take the above out of the present forum for further subsequent discussion is acceded to.


1.The practice of minimum numbers and ‘one in all in’ shall cease. Subject to the fair and equitable distribution of overtime.

2.Emergency overtime does not require notice.

3.Meal allowances are not applicable for planned overtime including ‘barriers’.

4.Employees agree to work a reasonable amount of overtime if required.

5.The Company agrees to the application of Article 12 of the Tradesmens’ Agreement in relation to the Meal Allowances for overtime. Where notice of overtime is not given the previous day (other than overtime following a rest day) the local arrangement will continue.

6.Where staff are required to travel on duty Article 13 of the Tradesmens’ Agreement shall apply.


1.Mechanical AE/AME will accept supervision from any qualified supervisor within their own group. Avionic AE/AME will accept supervision from any supervisor within their own group.

2.The exception to this clause is reference clause 3 of Work Practices.

3.In assessing future structures, current supervisory numbers and the balance of supervision to core trades will be taken into consideration.

4.Work allocation will continue under the present structure.


1.The Tradesmens’ group of Unions has no objections in principle to non-cash payroll and would be prepared to assist the Company in any non-compulsory campaign to eliminate cash payroll.


1.Discussion on electronic Attendance Recording by staff will take place as part of the Productivity Agreement review.


Craftworkers will be employed on a Temporary basis to assist in meeting peak demands and to facilitate short notice customers.

This may occur in the following circumstances:

1.Based on current business projections the Company’s manpower forecast is as per the attached. These forecasts may be influenced by business trends.

2.A review of this forecast followed by consultation will take place every 3 months in regard to workload, optimum permanent manning and optimum overtime levels.

3.An ongoing commitment to a continuing apprenticeship programme.

4.The core workforce to be fully utilised before temporaries are contemplated.

5.Irish Craftworkers will be considered in the first instance for temporary employment having regard to commitments agreed nationally.

6.Retired staff will be considered for temporary employment when all suitable and qualified Irish Craftworkers have been offered employment.

7.Thereafter any other E.U. suitable and qualified Craftworkers will be sourced.

8.Temporaries must be time-served Craftworkers in membership of the appropriate union, signatory to the Tradesmens’ Agreement.

9.Irish temporaries will be taken on as direct employees under the terms of our current agreements with the same pay and conditions applying to them.

10.EU temporaries will be taken on under the terms of our current agreements with the same pay and conditions applying to them.

11.The Company will not advertise in such a manner as to disadvantage unemployed suitable and qualified craftworkers.

12.It is agreed to draw up a list of current and potential skill shortages and it is also agreed to establish suitable training courses to address same where practicable.

The Company commits to offer permanent employment to 6 named individuals by October 1995.



Based on Current Business Projections









April 1994

+ 20


- 20





Early Retirement







October 1994

New Apprentices

+ 20





January 1995

+ 40


- 40





Early Retirement







October 1995

+ 20


- 20





October 1995

New Apprentices

+ 20





This level, at present forecast, will carry through to the 1996/97 period.

These figures are based on current business projections andare subject to funding to enable 83 additional early retirements take place as early as possible and Board Approval to recruit apprentices.

The October 1995 figure of 969 may increase to 975 by the recruitment of the six named permanent staff.

The above figures do not include craftworkers employed in Shannon, Cork, Commuter and Simulator Sections.


In relation to the efficiency of the organisation Management acknowledge there is merit in “Realising the Potential”. However, the main thrust of the document can only be realised after the Survival Plan has been accepted and put in place.

Joint Structures (Non-industrial relations) will be agreed and put in place to implement ‘Realising the Potential’ when and where practicable.

08 March 1994

Mr Frank O’Reilly

General Secretary

for and on behalf all Trades Unions

representing Craftworkers

in TEAM Aer Lingus

Dear Mr O’Reilly

It is important that you, your fellow officials and the Shop Stewards representing the craftworkers at TEAM understand that the Pay Freeze as outlined to you is a substantial and fundamental element of the Survival Plan.

Failure to agree on this issue as outlined by the company means failure to satisfy the criteria set down for the survival of the company. Without this element of the package being agreed there can be no injection of the £25m essential for TEAMs future.

Considering the nature of the crisis facing the company, it would be jointly irresponsible for management and unions not to have an agreement to this basic need.

While it is accepted that some significant changes have been agreed between the negotiating parties, please understand that this issue is of fundamental importance and without the Pay Freeze being accepted by you and your members the Survival Plan will not have been agreed.

In light of the above I trust that you will reconsider your position on the matter and inform us of your acceptance of the Pay Freeze.

John Behan




Further to the documentation distributed for each Craftworker within Team Aer Lingus, as of Friday, 11th March, 1994, containing detailed information on the Company/Union discussions/negotiations leading to the proposed agreement, on the changes necessary to meet the needs of the Survival Plan, contained in that documentation with the Company’s covering letter dated 3rd March, 1994. All of which was subject to further discussion and clarification at the Mass Meeting in the North Terminal on Monday, 14th March, 1994.

Craftworkers are respectfully requested to exercise their franchise in this matter by indicating their preference for or against by placing an ‘X’ in the appropriate space provided below for that purpose.







Completed Ballot Paper must be returned through your respective Union for an Aggregate Count not later than 4.00 p.m. on Friday, 18th March, 1994.

Mr. J. Mooney,

Aircraft Overhaul Manager,

Team Aer Lingus,

Dublin Airport.

18 March, 1994

Dear Mr. Mooney,

Re: Survival Plan

Following a Secret Aggregate Ballot of Craftworkers within TEAM Aer Lingus the proposals eminating from our negotiations in respect to the above, as explained and documented in the correspondence prepared for each Craftworker, as forwarded to you on Friday, 11th March, 1994, have been accepted, the terms of which can now be immediately implemented.

Trusting you will bring the terms of this settlement to the immediate attention of the Management concerned.


Yours sincerely,



Frank O’Reilly,

General Secretary,

on behalf of all Unions representing

Craftworkers in Aer Lingus.

A.E.E.U., A.G.E.M.O.U., A.T.G.W.U., N.U.S.M.W., S.I.P.T.U. & U.C.A.T.T.