Trade Unions Threat of Action Proves Effective – Council Announce Short List (1 July 2011)

Following the Joint Trade Union meetings, rallies and lobbies the Council have been forced to back down on some of their more extreme proposals to cut our pay, terms and conditions. This shows how strong the trade unions are when they act together and we believe that we can achieve even more if we continue with our campaign.

The Council have informed staff of the intended short list of savings they intend to make from employees’ pay, terms and conditions. They have done this without discussing the list with the trade unions. The short list still contains unpalatable cuts that we will need to review with members. A branch meeting will be called but it is likely that will be during the summer holiday period.

The short list is attached. As you can see the Council intend to remain within the National Joint Council for Terms and Conditions and Pay. The Pay Cut options have also been removed as has the proposal to remove sick pay for the first 3 days of sickness. Annual Leave cuts have also been withdrawn. That’s the good news that has been achieved by the trade unions’ reactions to date.

COUNCIL TO ATTACK LOWER PAID WORKERS’ PAY

However, there is still plenty of bad news, especially for our lower paid members whose work involves overtime, unsocial hours working, weekend work, standby duties and shifts. The Council are still proposing to remove all such allowances and are aiming their cuts at the lower paid front line staff. This is unacceptable and UNISON is still advocating for a “Yes” vote in the branch consultative ballot that began on Monday. All our residential workers, cleaning staff, care assistants, highways workers, school site services workers and many others need the support of their trade union colleagues as they are now left bearing the brunt of the Council’s attacks on pay, terms and conditions.

PAY FREEZE REMAINS

The Council still intend to freeze all incremental pay rises for two years. This will impact negatively on all the more recently employed staff who will rightly be angry that their employer sees fit to breach the agreements they made with them when they took them on.

COUNCIL ATTACKS THE SICK

The Council are still proposing to attack our Occupational Sick Pay arrangements and those who suffer from long term sickness will pay a high price in reduced pay and a reduced period of sick pay.

COUNCIL PLAN TO REMOVE CAR ALLOWANCES

The Council still plan to remove Essential car User Allowance. This allowance when properly applied is for staff who are expected to use their cars for business purposes. If the Council do remove this allowance then UNISON believes that the Council no longer believes that car use at work is essential. We would then urge all members to cease using their vehicles for work journeys. There appears to have been no assessment of the impact that would have on service delivery.

COUNCIL STILL PLAN TO DISMISS AND RE-ENGAGE

The Council have not withdrawn the threat of dismissal and re-engagement and that is fundamental to our concerns.

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