Tesco strikes suspended as Labour Court talks get under way

Strikes at Tesco stores nationwide have been suspended, pending talks due to begin over the weekend at the Labour Court.

A total of 16 stores across the country have been on strike since last week in the dispute over plans by Tesco to move around 250 pre-1996 staff recruits to less favourable contracts. Six more stores were due to join the action next Friday.

In a letter issued to its members last night, Mandate trade union said it was suspending the picketing of Tesco stores.

In a statement, it said: “both parties agree that there will be an orderly and peaceful return to work and that there are no recriminations either by or against staff or management as a result of the dispute to date.” Tesco has confirmed that it will not make any changes to pre-1996 contracts during talks.

Earlier, the Department of Social Protection denied that Tesco workers would have Family Income Supplement suspended or terminated because they were on strike.

The department acknowledged that an incorrect reference that gave such an impression had been posted on the website.

It said there was no provision in social welfare legislation which provides for the suspension or termination of FIS in the event that the recipient is involved in industrial action.

The department said the post had been removed and apologised for any upset or confusion caused by it.

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