As I have reported in previous weeks, the so-called consultation on ‘strengthening Probation and building confidence’ is nothing but a sham, and won’t change the intended direction of travel which is to create a false market and merely sell off the whole shambles under a different regional structure.
Just as was predicted at our recent AGM, the news of the current NPS pay offer has spooked CRC owners who are understandably worried that they will lose staff across to better paying employers, (well actually, the NPS to be precise). News reaches me of NPS vacancy pages on the internet receiving record numbers of hits, and examples already in of CRC staff voting with their feet despite taking a hit on continuity of service and deciding that reaching their pay maximum in a lot less time than they would have, is simply well worth it.
While the team here do their best to respond to incoming enquiries about the NPS pay offer, we had cause to issue some further clarification following reports we have received from members who were confused or angry (or both), following contact with UNISON members or having seen other non-Napo literature. It’s here again if by any chance you have not seen it.
At last we are in a position to publicise the pay offer and all NPS members for whom we have a preferred email address should have received a unique code which will allow you to vote in the ballot which launched today.
I expect that everyone who was at Napo's AGM in Southport will have a little less in the tank than is usual for a Monday today.
Feedback has been great, with many members telling me that they have returned from a long journey home highly motivated by the breakthrough on pay in the NPS, but also because they are determined to get four square behind our campaign for pay parity across the CRCs as well.
It was a little frustrating that we were not able to provide some of the detail contained in the NPS pay offer that we will be recommending to members in a ballot after the AGM.
Our wholesale opposition to the calamitous decision by David Gauke to retender the shortened CRC contracts, and offer new ones within a reconfigured 10 region structure was again reinforced in our submission to the ‘Strengthen Probation Building Confidence’ consultation last week.
My experience of many sets of pay negotiations over the years is that a delicate balance is required between keeping members up to date with news of progress whilst maintaining the necessary confidentiality.
The position as I write, is that we are now into the final few days of exchanges with the employer as the substantive negotiations which shape the basis of a pay offer and which require all parties to be present are pretty much exhausted.
This week's Blog comes to you live from Manchester Central. At last weeks meeting of the Napo NEC your delegates to the 2018 Trade Union Congress, Yvonne Pattison and myself were given approval to vote in favour of the General Council Statement on the current situation relating to Brexit.
Europe - in or out? It's been one of those taboo subjects that Napo does not have a policy position on. It is up there alongside Electoral Reform as one of those issues that we never seem to get around to discussing. That’s an observation not a criticism and given our own pressures and priorities it's hardly surprising.