Northern Ireland

Holiday pay ruling: PSNI to appeal Court ruling

Police officers Image copyright Pacemaker

The Police Service of Northern Ireland is to appeal a ruling on holiday pay.

In June, the Court of Appeal upheld a ruling that PSNI staff were owed money for a shortfall in pay dating back 20 years.

Miscalculations arose after holiday pay was based on basic pay and did not include overtime, meaning the PSNI was facing a £40m bill.

Chief Constable Simon Byrne said the ruling had "significant repercussions right across the public sector".

"Therefore I have concluded that it is important to seek further judicial clarity and I have instructed the PSNI legal representatives to submit an appeal to the Supreme Court," he said.

A Belfast-based solicitors that represent 3,500 police officers in the holiday pay case said the PSNI's decision to appeal the ruling was "disappointing but not unexpected".

They said the decision by the new chief constable to seek leave to go to the Supreme Court would "greatly lengthen the process to resolve this long-standing issue".

The solicitor added: "We have thousands of officers who are owed for under-payment of holiday pay stretching back more than 20 years and they, and their families, deserve to have this resolved.

"Our client, the Police Federation for Northern Ireland, has instructed us to continue to pursue its members' interests with the same vigour as we've done to date to ensure officers receive what they are entitled to."

In November 2018, a tribunal found that a group of more than 3,700 police officers and civilian staff were owed money for a shortfall in holiday pay dating back 20 years.

Back then, the bill was estimated to be about £30m.

However in June, Appeal Court judges held that holiday pay should be calculated on the basis of actual annual working days - meaning the figure could be in the region of £40m.

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