With over 2000 members across the Community and Private Sector, the branch recognises the importance of supporting our members whether they are employed in a large vol' org' such as Erskine Hospital, a GP surgery or a private nursing home.
UNISON Scotland and the local branch have invested significant resources to organise and support UNISON members is this area.
Strategic Organisation and Negotiations: Deborah Dyer (Regional Organiser)
Case work: Stephen Fullerton - 0141 331 4450
Sleepover Shift Ruling
UNISON members working for social care employers will be aware of the work that UNISON has been doing on our members behalf regarding sleepovers.
We strive to ensure employers recognise that working a
sleepover is considered working, at least for the purposes of calculating
whether a worker is being paid the National Minimum Wage / National Living
Despite winning a number of successful cases at Employment Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal, our members suffered a setback on this issue when the charity MENCAP successfully argued at the Court of Appeal that sleepovers were not to be considered working when ‘suitable sleeping facilities’ were provided.
UNISON is currently seeking leave to appeal this case at the Supreme Court and we hope that decision can be overturned again in favour of our members who work sleepovers.
While that decision is having a particularly negative impact for our members based in England and Wales, the policy of the Scottish Government is to support the payment of sleepovers at the Living Wage rate (£8.75 currently & £9.00 by April 2019). While paying sleepovers at Living Wage is the aim of the Scottish Government, it is not required in law.
Fortunately, most of
our charities based in Scotland are trying to comply with the aims of the
Scottish Government but we are aware of some employers who are seeking to take
advantage of the MENCAP decision.
Should UNISON be successful in the Supreme Court, we will do all we can to seek a suitable remedy for our members.
UNISON is engaged in negotiations with The Mungo Foundation
and Blue Triangle Housing Association around a revised job evaluation scheme.
The focus of the work is to ensure that the employers have
pay structures that are fit for purpose and free from any equal pay issues.
As we go to press, UNISON is awaiting final proposals from Blue Triangle Housing Association and we will be arranging meetings for members to discuss what the new system looks like.
Negotiations with The Mungo Foundation are at an earlier
stage and are being supported by ACAS who are market leaders at ensuring pay
structures are robust and fit for purpose.
The UNISON Convenor, Paul Roy, is on the job evaluation panel and any members with questions around the process are encouraged to get in touch with Paul who will be happy to help. Paul can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
UNISON has secured an agreement with Erskine Hospital that staff will receive pay as if at work when they take annual leave.
The deal comes on the back of the UNISON case Locke vs British Gas which has been to the European Courts.
UNISON lead steward at Erskine said, “The majority of staff across Erskine receives annualised pay so this ruling did not affect them, but there was a small group of long serving staff who still receive enhanced payments for nights and weekends. These staff were only paid a basic wage when on leave, so it was important to UNISON that they were paid properly. I am delighted that our members accepted the offer that UNISON negotiated which is actually better than the minimum legal entitlement. Once again UNISON delivers for our members.”
UNISON members across the Community, Voluntary and Private Sector could be better off if they work sleepover or don’t get paid travel time between visits after an important ruling at Employment Appeal Tribunal.
In a landmark case the EAT decided that time spent during a ‘sleep over’ and time spent ‘travelling between visits’ counted as working time and should be minimum wage compliant.
Branch Chair Marie Garrity sad, “This is a landmark decision for thousands of UNISON members who provide social care services in the community. For years UNISON has argued that time spent travelling between clients or on sleepover should be seen as working time and the courts have now at last agreed.”
UNISON members should NOTE that the ruling DOES NOT mean that staff should be paid their hourly rate when on sleepover or travelling from job to job, it means that the total pay divided by the hours worked (incl sleepovers etc) should not be less than the national minimum wage.
Marie had this advice for UNISON members in the social care sector, “If you currently work sleepovers or travel between jobs and do not get paid your hourly rate you should consider whether you are potentially being paid less than the National Minimum Wage, currently £6.31 per hour.
Bear in mind that the hourly rate will be calculated by working out the total pay and dividing it by all the hours worked by the member including sleepovers and travelling between assignments. If you believe that you are.
Members who think that they are not being paid properly should contact the branch office on 0141 331 4450 for more guidance.
UNISON, Scotland’s largest trade union with 160,000 members, will be attending The Gathering (www.gatherscotland.org.uk) on the 19th and 20th of February 2014 at the SSEC. This is the largest coming together of third sector employers, charities, and service providers in the country.
The Gathering is a place for passionate people from the third sector to network, showcase their work and learn from each other and to find the solutions to common problems.
Whether it’s funding, employability or health & wellbeing, UNSION will be there to offer solutions to third sector organisations, with our vast knowledge and expertise in the field we expect to have a very busy couple of days.
There’s will be a bustling exhibition and marketplace with over 120 exhibitors but our UNISON stall will be easy to spot so why not come along and see us. UNISON are also holding an event on the afternoon of the 19th where we will be focusing on working with voluntary sector employers to find the best way forward in this enforced period of austerity.
With that in mind, UNISON and the STUC are working with the sector to produce a new Fair Funding Charter that recognises the impact financial pressures on local government are having on third sector service providers. We are also working with the sector on a new approach to procurement that moves away from a race to the bottom in the quality of care.
Full details will be on the Gathering Website a bit closer to the time.
The Gathering is a FREE event, organised by SCVO so if you work in Social Care and want to know more come along and see us!
Following a national consultation with UNISON, GMB and RCN national officers, Four Seasons management have made the following pay offer for 2013:
1. The basic principle is that the pay rise would be 1.5% on existing pay effective from October 2013
2. For those on NMW (National Minimum Wage) the requirement is to increase by the NMW figure, which is from £6.19 to £6.31, which is 1.9% rise.
3. For those slightly above the NMW band, we must ensure that there is no undue erosion of differentials.
Accordingly, the details of FSHC pay increase offer are as below:
· Those between NMW and NMW+10p get a 12p rise
· Those on NMW+11 to NMW+20 get a 10p rise
· Those on NMW+21 and above get 1.5%
Joint Trade Union Recommendation
"UNISON and the Joint Unions believe that this is the best possible offer on pay we will be able to achieve this year given the current economic climate and the financial pressures on the Care Sector. Therefore the Joint Unions recommend acceptance of the offer from Four Seasons."
Members will be consulted through August
UNISON members employed by Cornerstone Community Care in the West of Scotland are being balloted on industrial action following proposals to cut 155 support workers jobs.
Cornerstone has said that those who are unsuccessful in securing their own jobs will be demoted to a support assistant role and see their salaries slashed by £2,000 - £3,000.
Support workers employed by Cornerstone Community Care provide quality care services to vulnerable adults in our communities.
Mark Clifford, UNISON Regional Organiser, said: “These are draconian and unnecessary cuts. Our members, many of whom have given years of loyal and dedicated service, are outraged at the proposed job losses and a whopping £2,000 - £3,000 slashing of salaries for those who are demoted.”
Despite the organisation seeing a surplus of approx £375,000 last year, Cornerstone claims it cannot sustain the current levels of support workers. It also claims that the need to reduce the numbers is driven by the self directed support agenda and service users’ care needs.
UNISON does not believe a coherent business case has been put forward and that other options are available which would see the current staff levels maintained.
Mark added: “UNISON has been left with no alternative but to ballot our members for industrial action.
“We have during our negotiations consistently requested that Cornerstone halt the changes and return to the negotiating table and embark on a more meaningful and constructive dialogue. Our members should not be held to ransom by the employer pushing ahead with the proposals come what may.
“They already face financial hardship as a result of an economic crisis brought about by the rich and greedy.
“Industrial action is always a last resort and we are always prepared to restart negotiations but this can only be achieved if there is a level playing field.
“We would urge the Cornerstone Community Care Board and the Chief Executive to halt the process and explore with UNISON a resolution to this dispute.”
UNISON is disgusted over the notice sent by Turning Point to its 2,600 staff threatening dismissal if you refuse to sign new contracts that slash terms and conditions. Turning Point are not listening to their staff, and we need to heat-up the campaign to get them to take notice.
Therefore UNISON members in Turning Point in the West Midlands will be going out on strike in on Friday 26 April 2013. The striking members will take their protest to the organisation’s offices in Central Manchester, and other members will be outside Turning Point’s London office.
Please encourage your colleagues to join UNISON to help our fight on your behalf. They can go to www.joinunison.org or call free on 0800 171 2194
Many of you have told us that you feel particularly betrayed as your hard earned TUPE protections are being swept away, including redundancy rights. The organisation has, to date, denied UNISON recognition although it transferred over by law under TUPE.
If the cuts to your pay and other terms and conditions are allowed to go ahead then many Turning Point workers will be put on the poverty line. Some of you are facing reductions in you pay of up to £10,000 per year. All staff will be hit by the changes depending on their individual contract terms. As you know, the cuts to your terms and conditions include:
• cut to all overtime pay
• cut in ‘sleep ins’, ‘on calls’ and other out of office payments
• stripping all staff of any enhanced redundancy payments
• cut in all unsociable hours payments meaning care staff will now be paid basic whether they work nights or days
• refusing to pay any future pay awards agreed by the NJC or Agenda for Change increments.
UNISON says it is fraudulent for this organisation to bid for contracts, take public money and then to slash workers’ pay. This is of particular concern, as due to the Government’s austerity measures, Turning Point is still targeting new contracts from NHS and Council services.
Turning Point was created to assist people find a new direction in life by helping those with substance misuse, mental health issues, a learning disability, or employment difficulties by providing tailored personalised care. Chief Executive Lord Victor Adebowale paid himself £165,000 and his three assistants another £473,000 in 2012. Turning Point is not in financial difficulty as their most recent published accounts demonstrate with reserves of over £5 million. The organisation wants to grow by winning more and more public contracts by slashing its workers pay.
· Send your messages of support to your striking colleagues to our West Midlands Community branch secretary Chris Durnall email@example.com
· Contact Lord Victor Adebowale, Turning Point, Standon House, 21 Mansell Street, London E1 8AA or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org asking Turning Point to:
o withdraw the dismissal notices and new contracts that workers are being pressured to sign
o enter into negotiation with UNISON to find alternative solutions.
· Ask your friends and colleagues to contact their local MP and Councillors asking them to support the campaign to protect Turning Point workers’ pay and conditions and not to give any further public contracts to this organisation. Use the website www.writetothem.com to contact your MP.
UNISON Branch Area Organiser Jennifer McCarey used an opportunity at the recent UNISON Scotland Health Conference to press Alex Neil MSP on extending the Living Wage to staff who provide services to NHS Boards, such as Car Parking attendants and the Community Sector.
Unfortunately the Ministers response was disappointing claiming that the Scottish Government want to do this but are prevented by Europe.
Commenting on his response, Branch Secretary Cathy Miller said, “I was disappointed that the Minister chose to hide behind Europe on this issue. If he is seriously saying that Europe prevents our Government from making private and community organisations pay a Living Wage, when they are carrying out public sector jobs, then we need to look at that closely. After all, it seems that Tory Mayor Boris Johnston has found a way around this problem, why can’t we in Scotland.”
The Glasgow Personalisation Network is organising a lobby of Glasgow City Council at 12.30 on Thursday 28th June 2012.
There are hard copies of a campaign leaflet available to collect from the receptions of UNISON House, 14 West Campbell Street, Glasgow G2 6R and UNISON Glasgow City Branch, 84 Bell Street, Glasgow G1 1LQ.
The lobby takes place before the last meeting of the full Council that afternoon, we hope Councillors will discuss the issue of personalisation cuts that day. The public can attend these meetings if they wish. Please use the link on the leaflet to let your Councillors know your concerns about personalisation cuts and come to the lobby to show the strength of opposition there is to personalisation being used to impose cuts.
UNISON NHS Glasgow Clyde and CVS Branch is calling on all CVS members and NHS workers who rely on community services in Glasgow to support the lobby!
UNISON Scottish Secretary Mike Kirby has welcomed the signing of a ‘historic’ recognition agreement with private care home provider Four Seasons. This allows UNISON better access to members and gives members the opportunity to engage with their employer on the big issues, with help from UNISON.
Mike said “Four Seasons is a major provider of private care for people in our communities. They are also a significant employer in the Scottish Care sector. UNISON welcomes the vision and commitment they have shown by entering into a recognition agreement with UNISON.”
Across Scotland Four Seasons employs around 2500 staff and many are already members of UNISON. UNISON will be working hard throughout the summer to recruit as many Four Seasons members as possible.
UNISON Organiser Dave Watson makes the case for the Scottish Living Wage being extended to 1000's of public sector workers and 1000's more community and voluntary sector employees - it's easy - so let's do it.