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NEWS

 

SINGLE STATUS

 

For the latest news please visit our Single Status Page.

 

PAY BALLOT

 

Due to the industrial action by the CWU workers, members may experience a delay in receiving their ballot paper. If you are eligible to participate in the ballot and have not received your ballot paper by Tuesday 16 October, the advice from UNISON is to check back on the National site www.unison.org for further information and help.

 

GOOD-BYE AND GOOD-LUCK

 

After 18½ years working in the Branch Office, Glenda Burgess, Branch Administrator, has now left Croydon UNISON for pastures new. 

 

                     

 

Due to a re-organisation at Regional Office, in which the four remaining Branch Administrators in the Region did not figure, they were offered voluntary severance (there were 29 when Glenda first began working here, nearly one in every Borough!).  As someone once said it was an offer she couldn’t refuse. 

 

 

Glenda was a very valued member of our Branch staff and contributed so much over the years to the efficiency and organisation of the Branch, she will be missed by all knew her, none more so than our Branch Assistant, Karen Eades, who is now taking up the reins of the Administrator role.  Glenda and Karen began working for Croydon UNISON within a fortnight of each other back in April 1989, so it is the end of an era for both of them.

 

 

So it is with much sadness that we bid farewell to Glenda and we would like to wish her every success for her future.  Glenda’s leaving “do” took place at the Green Dragon in Croydon last Friday (21st September).  Thank you to all who came along, including some of our past Branch Activists, and to all those who contributed to Glenda’s goodbye gift – although it was a very sad and emotional day we hope we gave her a good send off nevertheless, thanks again Glenda for all you did.  

 

 

 

BRANCH MEETINGS

 

The Branch held two Branch Meetings, the first in the Council Chamber at lunchtime on 25th September and the second at 4.30 pm in Friends Meeting Hall on 27th.  We are pleased to say that the combined attendance constituted a quorum.  The three items discussed were Pay, Parking Services and Single Status, all of which you can read about on this page, as well as two motions which were voted upon and carried; one on Pay and one on behalf of our colleagues in Parking Services, both are included in the articles below.

 

Parking Services

 

Malcolm Campbell informed the Branch Meetings that the On-Street Parking Services Contract had been awarded to APCOA, a huge global company.  The bid was between NCP (to whom the Off-Street Parking Services Contract was previously awarded), APCOA and an In-House bid.  All three bids were based on a certain level of proposed redundancies: APCOA 30, NCP 29 and the In-House bid 18.  The members and UNISON Reps involved have great concerns regarding the Council’s decision particularly as we have been made aware of many instances where APCOA appear to have treated their staff in a way we would not accept.

 

In light of the proposed redundancies, we have declared a Trade Dispute with London Borough of Croydon.  This prompted the Chief Executive to request that we meet with the Head of HR & OD to discuss the situation.  These discussions are continuing but if the matter can’t be resolved we will look to ballot our members in Parking Services for Industrial Action.

 

The following motion was presented to the Meetings and CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY.   

 

“This Branch Meeting is appalled at the way in which the contract for On Street Parking has been awarded to CPS-APCOA. This is despite information being provided to Councillors regarding that company’s dreadful record as an employer, and the fact that there is a serious question as to the legality of transferring the whole service.

 

We agree to support our members in Parking Services in whatever way they decide to fight this in accordance with UNISON’s rules.”

 

Pay 2007

 

Malcolm Campbell, Branch Secretary, explained to those present that the Employers offer was, in effect a pay cut.  Back in April this year the Retail Price Index was running at 4.5% and although it has since fallen slightly, the figure was rising again.  Even with 3.4% being offered to the lowest paid workers, the offer still fell sort of a pay increase.  He said the Government were using public sector workers pay to control inflation, while people in the private sector were enjoying higher pay rises including those fat cats in the city many of whom earn more in bonuses that most public sector workers would earn in a lifetime!  He urged members to vote “YES” in the coming ballot. 

 

The following motion was put before the Meeting and CARRIED with 82 voting in favour with 3 against and 5 abstentions.

 

“This branch meeting notes that the Local Government Service Group Conference earlier this year passed a motion that committed UNISON to reject any pay offer involving an “overall envelope” of 2.5% or less.

 

As the latest offer from the employers was an “overall envelope” of 2.5%, we are therefore pleased that a decision has been taken to ballot UNISON’s Local Govt membership regarding strike action in pursuit of a decent pay settlement. This is despite the actions of certain people who attempted to overturn that binding democratic Conference decision.

 

We urge all members to vote “yes” in the forthcoming ballot and support any strike action that is called by UNISON. Only in this way we will be able to resist the attempts by the Government and our employers to use restraint of our wages as a means of controlling inflation. It is completely unfair that we should be placed in this position simply because we are public sector workers.”

 

Single Status

 

Malcolm Campbell provided an update.

 

SAY NO TO THE PAY OFFER – VOTE "YES" FOR STRIKE ACTION

 

Below is the latest news from UNISON National Office with regard to the claim and the ballot timetable:

 

The Employers' Final Offer

 

It’s six months since UNISON lodged the 2007-8 NJC pay claim for a 5% or £1000 increase on pay and improved conditions. The employers have now made their final pay offer this year of 2.475% on scale points 5 - 49, with no staging, and 3.4% on scale point 4 to give a minimum rate of £6 per hour.  The offer included a joint proposal to "a review of the way that local government pays and rewards its workforce, with nothing ruled in and nothing ruled out".

Vote YES for strike action

 

The UNISON NJC Committee has considered the offer and decided to reject it.   UNISON is now calling on you to do the same by voting "YES" in the ballot for strike action.

 

850,000 in UNISON - We can do it!

 

It won't be easy.  For our campaign to succeed you will need to be prepared to take part in all-out, escalating strike action, starting with a 2 day strike in November. But as UNISON we are strong. 850,000 members will be in the ballot and if you all vote "YES" and join the two-day strike we can make the employers and the government think again and improve their offer.

 

Get Active!

 

We need every UNISON member to vote in the ballot.  All our members covered by the Green Book in all sections of the workforce - councils, fire and rescue services, national parks and the private and voluntary sector - must vote and vote "YES" in the ballot.  You can help to make this campaign a success:

 

·         Tell your Colleagues about our website – tell them about the offer

·         Recruit new members to UNISON – the more members the stronger we are!

The ballot opens on 5th October and closes on 26th October 2007

 

If you have not received your ballot paper by 11th October, please call 0845 355 0845 

 Requests for ballot papers must be received by noon on 23rd October

 

TO GET AN IMPROVED PAY OFFER, VOTE "YES" TO STRIKE ACTION

 

MAKE SURE YOU DO YOUR BIT!

 

BLACK HISTORY MONTH – COME AND CELEBRATE

Croydon UNISON Black Members Group in conjunction with the Branch is organising a free Cultural Awareness Day to celebrate Croydon’s cultural diversity and the bi-centenary of the abolition of the slave trade.  The event will take place in Black History month on 18th October at Ruskin House. It is open to all to attend.  More details of what’s on during the day and a reply slip to attend the event are available here.

 

JOB EVALUATIONS – APPEALS

The vast majority of jobs have now been evaluated but there are still a number to be completed.  If you have had your job evaluated and you are not happy with the outcome you should appeal. 

 

How do you appeal?

 

Step 1 

 

On receipt of your letter from HR you have 28 days to appeal.  Your letter should contain your scores however if not you will need to ask for a copy.  You should request this from the Single Status Team on:

 

Helpdesk: 0208 667 8388

Email: single.status@croydon.gov.uk

Address to write to: Single Status, 8th Floor, Taberner House, Park Lane, Croydon, CR9 3JS

 

Step 2

 

You need an appeal form which is on the intranet (hidden deeply within the Single status information) or from our website here.  You will also need a copy of the conventions, also obtainable from the intranet or from our website.

 

Step 3

 

You will need to identify the areas you wish to challenge (i.e. the area in which you feel you should have scored higher) and write down why you feel you should have scored more.

 

Step 4

 

You should complete the Appeal Form (please bear in mind that your line manager is required to sign this) and a covering letter and submit it to the Single Status Team.  You may wish to deliver this in person to the address above.  If you require assistance to complete the form you should contact your local Steward (details can be found on our Branch Directory).  If you don’t have a local Steward then you should contact your Departmental Convenor (details below).

 

Once your letter has been submitted an Appeals Panel will be convened to consider your submission.  Contrary to our initial expectations you won’t be automatically invited to this meeting although you may be requested to attend if the panel require clarification.  You will then be informed of the decision.

 

Contacts – Departmental Convenors

 

If you require any further information please call your departmental lead:

 

Anna Raghunanan

ECPP 

xtn 61115

Iteen Stephens

Finance & Resources

xtn 88336

Eleanor Tracey

Social Services

xtn 62167

James Young

Housing

xtn 62673

Malcolm Campbell 

Policy & Corporate Services

xtn 65435

Laurie Pocock

Planning & Transportation

xtn 62648

Mervyn D’Cruze

CYPL (Education)

xtn 65435

 

Or the Branch Office on 8760 5435 or 65435 at Taberner House.

 

For the latest on Single Status please visit our updated page here.

 

PENSIONS

The consultation period regarding extending protection for the “Rule of 85” to 2020 ends on 1st October.  Branches were invited to submit their views.  Naturally the opinion we conveyed was that it would be right and proper for us to have that protection in the same way as our counterparts in Scotland do. 

The Government Regulations on the Scheme can still be found on the Pension Update Page

You can also log-on to the UNISON National Website www.unison.co.uk for more information. 

 

SOCIAL CLUB

 

Don’t forget you can use the bar facilities at the Labour & Trade Union Club at Ruskin House, Coombe Road while we continue to pursue arrangements for the new Club.  In order for you to be able to use Ruskin House please take your UNISON membership card with you.

 

We would still be interested to know your views on what you would like to see included in the new club.  If you’ve any items you’d like included on the “wish list” please contact the Club Secretary, Phil Young at phil.young@croydon.gov.uk.

 

 

ANNUAL REPORT

 

You can still read the Annual Report here.

 

CALLING ALL DISABLED MEMBERS…….

If you would like more information please contact our Disabled Members Officers, Kay Kakad at kaushalya.kakad@croydon.gov.uk

CALLING ALL VOLUNTEERS………

We are always looking for more members to get actively involved in the Branch. There are many areas where members don't have a local Steward.

So - if you would like to get more involved in the Branch and its decision making, take part in negotiations with management and represent members, why not become a Steward or Health and Safety Rep?

We won't throw you in at the deep end. There are many courses available that are organised through the TUC or UNISON and they run throughout the year. You will also have the support of the Branch Office. Time off for full training is available, please contact the Branch Office for more details or e-mail branchoffice@croydonunison.co.uk

ARE YOU GETTING IT?

Please let us know in the Branch Office if you have changed your address, either by phone on 8760-5435 or via e-mail to branchoffice@croydonunison.co.uk it’s important we keep your records up to date so that you are fully informed on matters that could affect you.

If you are prepared to be a workplace contact for us, which involves handing out UNISON information, Newsletters etc to your fellow UNISON members again please let us know in the Branch Office.

We want to make sure all our members are informed on what's happening in the Branch.