18/06/2019

PSNI Face £40m Holiday Pay Bill

The Police Service of Northern Ireland is facing a bill of £40 million after losing a legal battle over holiday pay.

In a landmark judgement, the Court of Appeal dismissed Chief Constable George Hamilton's bid to overturn a finding that his staff and civilian workers should be paid sums dating back two decades.

The challenge related to an industrial tribunal decision that the pay had been wrongly based on basic working hours rather than actual hours worked, including overtime. That decision, made last November, meant nearly 3,750 officers and support staff were owed up to £30 million.

Appeal judges then held on Monday 17 June that holiday pay should be calculated on the basis of annual working days, rather than the 365 days favoured by the tribunal.

Claims may potentially go as far back as 1998, with payments reaching £10,000 per officer in some cases.
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The Chair of the Police Federation for Northern Ireland, Mark Lindsay, said the Court of Appeal Judgement is a "major victory" for thousands of its members.

Mr Lindsay commented: "This ruling is most welcome. It paves the way for our men and women to be properly compensated for the work they did. It is a major victory for the 3,500 officers we represented in this case, and we now look forward to the Employment Tribunal deciding on precious amounts owed.

"This more than justifies our decision to go to the Employment Tribunal as we believed there was something inherently unfair in the way officers were being denied what was rightfully their entitlement.

"Through our legal representatives, Edward & Co., we will seek a timely and final resolution to claims but because of the numbers involved, it may take some time to conclude proceedings in this matter."



(JG)

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