News items

REMINDER – The AECI – Annual General Meeting (AGM), will take place virtually tomorrow Saturday 6th March 2021 at 11am.

The Executive Council would like to see as many Members attending as possible.  Login details have been sent by email to all Members.



Over the coming weeks, and in line with the Level 5 guidance for further and higher education it is planned to have a phased return of craft apprentices to Training Centres, Institutes of Technology and Technological Universities to complete essential practical elements of Phase 2, 4 and 6 training and assessment. A phased return will help ensure the safe return of apprentices, instructors, lecturers, support staff, and the wider community in line with public health guidelines.


Within further education and training, 251 Phase 2 apprentices with the most significant time-critical status are returning to complete essential practical training on Monday 01 March. Detailed work with stakeholder representatives on the phasing of return of subsequent groups of craft apprentices across Phases 2, 4 and 6 is underway. The process of phased return will be monitored on a continuous basis over the coming weeks to help ensure ongoing public health safety.


We would be grateful if you can share this update with all relevant colleagues. Apprentices are being informed of the phased return plans and will be advised that their training provider and SOLAS will be in contact with them to confirm the date of return that applies to them. Due to the phased approach apprentices’ training phase will finish some weeks later than originally planned.  Off-the-job training allowance will continue to be paid and employers will be informed.


We would like to thank you and colleagues again for all of your hard work this term in very difficult circumstances. We look forward to working with you over the coming weeks to support craft apprentices to complete their current phase of training.


SOLAS and HEA, 26 February 2021

Alan McGrath

Director of Apprenticeship

+353 (0) 1 533 2487 / 087 9419964


An tSeirbhis Oideachais Leanúnaigh agus Scileanna

Further Education and Training Authority

Block 1, Castleforbes House, Castleforbes Road, Dublin D01 A8N0

+ 353 (0) 1 533 2500/


Supreme Court hears appeal in crucial case for sectoral bargaining


At a vital Supreme Court hearing for the future of sectoral wage bargaining, it was argued by the State that applying minimum pay and conditions across a sector is consistent with European social policy.

The State is appealing a High Court ruling that struck out the part of the 2015 Industrial Relations (Amendment) Act that underpins Sectoral Employment Orders (SEOs).

Up to the High Court ruling by Mr Justice Garrett Simons last June, these existed in electrical contracting, mechanical contracting and general construction, covering almost 100,000 workers. The electrical contracting SEO was struck out, but a stay was placed on the striking out of the other two, pending the Supreme Court appeal.

Attorney General Paul Gallagher argued at the Supreme Court this week that the 2015 legislation was different to the previous legislation on sectoral bargaining that had been struck out by the Supreme Court in the McGowan case in 2013, in that it set out clear criteria by which the Labour Court could make decisions on sectoral pay and conditions.

He said that many other EU countries provided for sectoral pay and conditions and under the Posted Workers’ Directive, workers posted from one EU member state to another had to be paid the sectoral wages for the state in which they were working.

The State was also represented by Oisín Quinn SC and Eoin Carolan SC and they were instructed by John Boyle of the Chief State Solicitor’s Office.

The AECI – Annual General Meeting (AGM), will take place virtually this year on Saturday 6th March 2021 at 11am.

The Executive Council would like to see as many Members attending as possible.

We will be sending out the appropriate details in advance.



New Wiring Rules IS10101 Courses

Two Courses running at present that may be of interest to you –

One course is approx 3.5 hours in duration and is in-house face to face.

Another course is online and is more in depth.

Please contact us for details should either be of interest to you.




On 23rd June last the High Court declared that all SEOs (i.e. construction, mechanical and electrical) were invalid.  This Judgment followed a case taken against the Minister, the Attorney General and the Labour Court.  The defendants in this case advised the High Court of their intention to appeal the decision and on 31st July last the High Court granted a stay on the construction and mechanical SEOs pending the outcome of the appeal to the Court of Appeal / Supreme Court.


The impact of the above is that the electrical SEO is no longer legally binding.  However, the construction and mechanical SEOs remain in place and are, therefore, fully operational.  The granting of a stay by the High Court means that construction workers have a legal entitlement to an increase in pay and pensions of 2.7% on 1st October next.

As you are already aware, the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has meant that it’s now vital to limit social contact and avoid gatherings.

For that reason, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone our annual Electrical Trade Show 2020.   While we know this is disappointing,

we hope you can understand the steps we are taking to help keep our staff, exhibitors and attendees safe and help prevent the further spread of the virus.

We have changed the date to Wednesday 24th February 2021 in the same venue, The Lucan Spa Hotel Co. Dublin.

Choosing to postpone our event was a difficult decision, especially when we have put time and effort into the planning and promotion.

However, by doing so, we will be keeping our attendees safe, helping to flatten the curve of the pandemic, and affecting positive change.

While this may cause some inconvenience in the short term, we can work on making our 2021 Electrical Trade Show our best one yet.

Thank you for your patience and support and for your understanding during these unprecedented times and we  will keep you updated as we receive further instructions / guidelines from the government / HSE.

Poster Trade Show POSTER 2021

We are delighted to inform you that The Electrical Trade Show 2020 will take place on Wednesday 2nd September 2020 in full compliance with COVID-19 government guidelines.
As Citywest Hotel is now a self-isolation facility for COVID-19 patients we are hosting our annual trade show this year at the smaller venue of the Lucan Spa Hotel, Dublin.
We believe this event will afford us the opportunity to once again ‘rub shoulders’  together, while social distancing and return to positively celebrate the best our industry has to offer.
We are not by any means ignoring the severity of the current COVID-19 situation, but we have to stay positive and our Trade Show has a role to play in this.  A variety of seminars will be held throughout the day on various topics.  We look forward to welcoming you there.

1st July 2020

No   National or Collective Agreement   Exists.

 AECI would again like to confirm that the only Agreement between AECI & CONNECT Trade Union is the Terms & Conditions of the Electrical SEO 2019.

While the High Court has declared this SEO as invalid, AECI continue to use this as our T& C’s, not withstanding that there is a stay on the Pensions, Death in Service & Sick Pay .

CONNECT  incorrectly  state that Electrical Contractors  must   legally,  honour  “Collective or National Agreement”.

This is absolutely untrue and unfortunate that CONNECT does not do the honourable thing and admit to this as  “FAKE NEWS”.

Employment Law protects all workers particularly relating to their Terms & Conditions and AECI fully supports & adheres to this fact.

In the recent High Court decision (23rd June 2020) on the SEO’s,  Mr Justice Garrett Simons made a very clear and important statement that there is no “COLLECTIVE OR NATIONAL AGREEMENT”.  AECI are happy to continue striving for harmony in the Electrical Contracting Industry, with CONNECT & other employer bodies, however,  at  every turn CONNECT appear to undermine facts and makes it difficult to continue to trust them.


Chris Lundy

Executive Secretary

Association of Electrical Contractors (Ireland)

Woodview Centre, Main Street, Celbridge, Co. Kildare

Phone: +353 (0)1 610 2715