January 29, 2017 8:36 am

Collective agreements must be honoured

Both parties to any collective agreement must adhere to the terms and conditions set out in the agreement that has been agreed upon collectively, according to Employment Minister Hon. Jone Usamate.

A government statement said Minister Usamate had received queries from trade unions on issues relating to the breaching of collective agreements.

Minister Usamate said good faith required a trade union and an employer to bargain for a collective agreement.

“They must meet each other from time to time for the purpose of bargaining and must consider proposals made by each other.  After the initiation of bargaining, the trade union and the employer must use their endeavours to enter into an agreement.”

Minister Usamate reminded employers and trade unions that a collective agreement becomes legally binding once signed by both parties and a proof of the fact is the copy of the Certificate of Registration issued by the Registrar of Trade Unions.

Either party that breaches the collective agreement may report the matter in writing and a prescribed manner to the Permanent Secretary for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations within three months under Section 170 of the Employment Relations (Amendment) Act 2015.