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Ireland’s Minister for Business & Employment, Ged Nash, is working to have legislation on collective bargaining rights enacted by the end of this year. The legislation is intended to significantly strengthen the rights of workers in companies that refuse to engage in collective bargaining, while strengthening statutory protection to guard against the victimisation of workers in such companies.
The Bill is currently being drafted with the expectation that the new legislation will be in place by the end of 2014.
The Cabinet approved the drafting of such legislation in mid-May.
Mr Nash commented: "The introduction of new collective bargaining legislation will fulfil an important commitment under the Programme for Government. The Bill will amend the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2001. For employees it will significantly enhance their ability to negotiate their working conditions. For employers, it will provide certainty in managing their workplaces in the years ahead.”
“These measures were the subject of a detailed consultation process with all key stakeholders. Once agreed, the legislation will proceed through the Oireachtas (Ireland’s National Parliament comprising the upper and lower houses) during the autumn, where I look forward to constructive engagement and inputs from all parties.”
“Taken together with other important reforms such as the reintroduction of a Joint Labour Committee system; the proposals to re-establish a constitutionally robust Registered Employment Agreements regime; the establishment of the Low Pay Commission and the initiative to modernise the workplace relations mechanisms in Ireland demonstrates a commitment to fairness at work and a progressive employment agenda,” he concluded.