Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Single Status

2,200 Kirklees UNISON members at a branch meeting on single status in December 2008 at Huddersfield Town football ground.

I have been a Branch Secretary of Kirklees UNISON for 20 years. Of the 10,000 Kirklees Council staff affected by Single Status, 8,600 are Kirklees UNISON members. The branch has achieved:

1) Maternity Leave
Kirklees Council Conditions
6 weeks at 90% of full pay
33 weeks at 1/2 pay
Compared to: -
National Conditions
6 weeks at 90% of full pay
12 weeks at 1/2 pay
21 weeks statutory maternity pay
2) Holidays
Kirklees Council Conditions
23 days
(28 days after 5 year's service)
plus 12 1/2 days public holidays.
Total paid holiday: 35 1/2 ( 40 1/2 after 5 year's service)
All staff, irrelevant of grade, get the same holiday for the same service.
Compared to: -
National Conditions
21 days
(26 days after 5 year's service)
plus 10 days public holiday
Total paid holiday: 31 (36 after 5 year's service)
3) Part-time workers
Receive time and a half for any time worked more than half an hour either side of their contracted hours (irrespective of whether they've worked 37 hours in that week).
4) Premium payments
Any staff contracted to work 5 days per week will get, if they are asked to work at less than 6 weeks' notice, a minimum of double time (more if they earn less than £10 per hour) for working on any Saturday, Sunday , public holiday or their 6th or 7th day (even if this is not a Saturday or Sunday). The premium rate for at the above times at morethan 6 weeks' notice is time and 2/3rds.
5) Disturbance Rate
The same rate for all staff irrespective of grade or whether they are a car user.
6) Casual Working
There is a joint agreement with the council that all casual working will be be removed and replaced by staff on a minimum 10-hour contract.
7) 'In-house' Provision
Kirklees Council has had a Tory Council for most of the last 5 years. In the last 5 years millions of pounds of work has been brought 'in-house' ( including some work that has never been previously in-house). No service remains outside of the council as a result of CCT. Grounds Maintenance, Catering and Cleaning, Highways Construction, Transport Services, Building Maintenance, Parking Enforcement and the Bins are all provided in-house. Consequently Kirklees Unison has 4,000 members who are (former) manual workers.
8) Cars
No employee can be compelled to provide a car for work. All employees are paid a car user allowance rate of 61p per mile.
9) Pay frequency
All staff in Single Status on less than £35,000 per year can elect to be paid weekly or 4-weekly.
10) Stand-by/call-out
All Stand-by is at a minimum of £136 per week. Call-out is £58 for the first two hours and time and a half thereafter.
11) 'No losers'
No worker to lose a penny because of Single Status.
These terms and conditions are not perfect but show what can be achieves at a time when Council's are trying to cut terms and conditions. The branch have recently agreed to ballot all our members for strike action because of the Council's attempt to get rid of the 'no losers' clause .

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