SIPTU has written to the management of the Stryker plant in Carrigtwohill, County Cork, highlighting to it a call by the Taoiseach, Simon Harris, for the company to ‘take seriously’ statutory agencies recommendations for it to engage in collective bargaining with its workers’ trade union.

SIPTU Deputy General Secretary, Greg Ennis, said: “We have written to the company highlighting to it a statement by the Taoiseach Simon Harris that he would encourage the company to take seriously the recommendations of Ireland’s National Contact Point (NCP) for the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises for it to engage in collective bargaining with its workers chosen trade union, SIPTU. 

“Furthermore, in his response to the issue of its refusal to engage in collective bargaining at its Carrigtwohill plant, the Taoiseach said he would be making enquiries with the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment regarding the company.

“The recently issued NCP recommendations state that with regard to Chapter V of the OECD Guidelines, Stryker ‘should be prepared to engage in collective bargaining with the workers chosen representatives’. The recommendations go on to say that, ‘the NCP notes that the company honours pre-existing collective bargaining arrangements at two other facilities. It recommends that the company consider how these arrangements can be replicated at its other facilities, so its entire Irish workforce has the same representational arrangements in place’.”

He added: “These recommendations follow a lengthy and most thorough two-year investigation of a SIPTU complaint concerning Stryker’s refusal to engage with the Union at its Carrigtwohill plant. The Union has also secured a favourable Labour Court recommendation on the issue of recognition for collective bargaining purposes concerning the Stryker plant in Carrigtwohill.

“For many years, Stryker staff employed in the company’s plants in Limerick and Macroom, County Cork, have benefited from collectively bargained agreements which have been negotiated between management and SIPTU representatives. This right should no longer be denied to the growing number of SIPTU members employed in the Stryker plant in Carrigtwohill.

It is the correct thing for the company to do and we welcome the growing political pressure on it to respect the right of workers to collectively bargain their terms and conditions of employment.”