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.

This is what I have been saying at any number of events, including meetings of the Justice and Family Court Unions Parliamentary Group and last week’s gathering of Labour Police and Crime Commissioners which was also attended by Lord Ramsbotham who is heading up the Labour Party’s own review of the future of Probation which we are obviously linked into.

Meanwhile, the unions have made their position clear in the initial exchanges with senior MoJ and HMPPS leaders where we are in the process of ensuring clear conduits are up and running about the Government’s plans for Probation and how we are going to handle the transition of work in Wales back to the NPS.

I will be issuing more details about all of this as soon as we have more substantive news, but meanwhile I thought you should see the agreed statement that the unions have insisted will be included in all minutes of meetings around the intended ‘remarketisation’ exercise.

"Napo/ UNISON/GMB request that the following statement appear at the start of the minutes of this and all subsequent meetings of the ‘Strengthening probation, building confidence,’ Engagement Forum.

That whilst Napo/UNISON/GMB are prepared to take part in the Engagement Forum meetings, Napo/UNISON/GMB wish to make it explicitly clear that we are in total opposition to the ‘re-marketisation’ of the CRC contracts as proposed in the ‘Strengthening Probation, building confidence consultation launched by the Secretary of State for Justice. Moreover, we reserve our rights to take such steps as we deem appropriate (including the possibility of legal action), in support of our policy to achieve the reunification of a Probation service under public control and ownership."

Napo Women’s Occupational Health seminar

This will take place on Thursday 22 November at 160 Falcon Road, Clapham Junction, between 10.30 - 4.00. It looks like it will be a highly interesting day and Sarah Friday tells me that additional speakers and subject matters have now been finalised. The revised agenda includes:

  • Scarlet Harris, TUC women’s officer, who will speak about pregnancy and health and safety, maternity rights and family policy.  
  • Susan Murray, visiting Ruskin College speaker will look at the huge issue our women members’ face of stress at work. Stress is a problem for all our members, but is a particular problem for women as they are generally at a higher risk of hazards such as bullying, violence and harassment and risks that can cause work-related stress. 

The seminar covers a range of issues that impact on women at all stages of their working lives.  Don’t miss this opportunity to attend this important seminar; there are still places available - if you, or someone from your branch, wants to attend please contact Shireena Suleman on

Tea and coffee will be provided but all other expenses, including travel must be covered by your branch.

The full details of the event are as follows:

Professor Myra Hunter and Doctor Claire Hardy

Women's health at work - results of a survey of NAPO members

This session will involve Professor Myra Hunter from King’s College London and Dr Claire hardy from Lancaster University sharing the findings from the Women’s Health Survey conducted with Napo female members. The survey looks specifically at the menopause and premenstrual experiences and the session hopes to engage in useful discussions about the findings and what can be done next with these insights.

Andrea Oates

Women’s health and safety at work 

Andrea, who is a freelance journalist and author of recent Labour Research Department booklet on women’s occupational health, will talk about some of the recent initiatives the Women's Health and Safety Booklet covers.

Susan Murray

Stress at work and how to address this 

Susan worked as a solicitor in private practice in the 1990s representing clients in criminal, and family cases and latterly personal injury claims, including representing trade union members.     Moving to UNISON, she worked mainly on Criminal Injury Claim cases.  This was followed by legal professional indemnity work.  Joining the Transport and General Workers Union in 2002, she retired from her post as National Health and Safety Adviser for its successor union Unite in April 2018.  She has been appointed a visiting tutor to Ruskin College, Oxford.  
Susan’s special interests include gender and occupational health and safety, having acted for several years as an informal co-ordinator of TUC gender and occupational health and safety working group.

Katie Lomas, Napo chair will report on the latest Napo activities.  

Burning Books to play at GFTU Qourn 23rd November

Ian Richards the GFTU operations manager tells me that a performance of “Burning books” by the superb Jess Green is taking place at Quorn Grange Hotel near Loughborough, Leicestershire at 7:00pm on 23rd November (as part of the November EC meeting event).

GFTU are trying to promote the event around partner organisations and Union regions and they have asked me to circulate the attached information about ticket availability through Eventbrite 

Ian can be reached at

STOP PRESS - NPS Pay Offer: Napo Pay Ballot result

News just in that we have an overwhelming vote in favour of the two year pay offer from the NPS.

The result will be mailed out separately to all members and we are hopeful that our sister unions will be able to declare positive results.

If so it will send a very strong signal that the Government needs to find the money to offer the same deal for our CRC members #payUnity.





Blog type: 
General Secretary's Blog