SIPTU members in Edenderry Power Ltd (EPL), Edenderry, County Offaly, began a 24-hour work stoppage today (Monday, 27th March), at 7.30 a.m. in a dispute concerning collective bargaining rights at the power generation plant. SIPTU Organiser, John Regan, said: “In conjunction with their work stoppage our members have placed pickets on the entrance to the plant. For the duration of this industrial action the power generation plant will not be supplying energy to the national electricity grid. “Due to management intransigence our members were left with no option but to conduct a work stoppage in pursuit of their demand that the company respects an agreement to engage in collective bargaining on a pay increase for workers. If management continues to refuse to engage in meaningful negotiations, SIPTU members in the plant will conduct a further 24-hour work stoppage on Thursday, 6th April. “This dispute is in relation to the Bord na Móna subsidiary refusing to accept that a collective bargaining agreement signed in November 2013 covers our members’ right to have their basic pay increases negotiated by SIPTU representatives.” He added: “The company entered into talks on a pay increase of 3.5% in April 2014. In early 2016, it derailed the process at the Workplace Relations Commission by stating that a collective agreement between the union and management did not cover pay negotiations. This resulted in it claiming that SIPTU representatives did not have a right to represent its members in pay negotiations. “Workers in EPL have not received a pay increase since 2007. This is remarkable when it is considered that they are working for a subsidiary of a semi-state company which has recorded profits of €85 million in the last three years.”