Joint Labour Committees
What is a Joint Labour Committee?
A Joint Labour Committee (JLC) is an independent body made up of equal numbers of employer and worker representatives. A JLC sets the employment conditions and minimum rates of pay for employees in a certain sector, for example, contract cleaning.
JLCs are set up by the Labour Court following an application from either:
- The Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment
- A trade union
- Any organisation that represents the workers or the employers involved
The chairman and substitute chairman of a JLC is appointed by the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment.
What does a Joint Labour Committee do?
Joint Labour Committees can draft up an Employment Regulation Order (ERO), setting out the employment conditions and minimum rates of pay for the sector they represent. They send the draft ERO to the Labour Court for review.
If the Labour Court agrees with the terms set out in the draft ERO, the ERO will be sent to the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment. When the Minister signs the ERO, it is given statutory effect, which means it becomes law.
There are currently 3 EROs in force, for the contract cleaning, security and early learning and childcare sector.
The law on Joint Labour Committees
The role of a Joint Labour Committee is set out in the Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act 2012. This amends the Industrial Relations Act, 1946.
Under the Act:
- JLCs can set a basic adult wage rate and 2 additional higher rates
- Companies in financial difficulty can ask for an exemption from paying ERO rates
- When setting wage rates, JLCs must take certain factors into account, such as competitiveness and rates of employment and unemployment
- JLCs no longer set Sunday premium rates
Current Joint Labour Committees
Joint Labour Committees (JLCs) represent workers in a particular sector. Currently, there are Joint Labour Committees for:
- Agricultural workers
- Contract Cleaning
- Early Learning
- English Language Schools
- Retail, Grocery and Allied Trades
- Security Industry
You can find more information about Joint Labour Committees (JLCs) on the Labour Court website. You can also read about JLCs on the Workplace Relations Commission website.
If you have any questions about JLCs, you can contact the Workplace Relations Commission’s Information and Customer Service.