Monday, June 20, 2011

UNISON trade union recognition in Civil Service?

I suppose that many people will be surprised that the largest public sector trade union in the country is not recognised by the Government. There are around 2000 UNISON members who work for the “Core” Civil
Service and probably another 10,000 who work for related outside bodies.  Yet there is no formal recognition agreement with UNISON. This is not to say that the traditional Civil Service unions, the PCS,
Prospect and FDA are not doing an excellent job for their members.  It only seems fair that UNISON should take their place alongside the other unions.

Especially now that the Civil Service is doing away with devolved bargaining and negotiations and having a national framework instead.

Without recognition this could mean that UNISON members have changes to their terms and conditions without their union even being consulted.  This cannot be right.  Even worse, if the government does
go ahead and bring in universal credit.  One consequence of this could be another 10,000 UNISON members who are currently housing benefit officers in local councils may well find themselves under Civil
Services terms (again).

In the run up to the Tolpuddle Festival next month this is a good time to remind the Civil Service managers that everyone is entitled to collective bargaining.  Never mind universal credits this is a universal and fundamental human right.
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