Tuesday, June 21, 2011

UNISON NDC 2011: Abolition of Two Tier Code - Motion 28

This is a copy of my speech today on Motion 28: Abolition of Two Tier Code

"President, Conference, John Gray, Housing Association Branch, Greater London Region. Speaking in favour of Motion 28 and this amendment.

Conference, I am speaking as someone who was actually“contracted out” of a local authority without the benefit of the Two tier code and now the UNISON Secretary of a Branch that organises in over 160 employers and has to try and deal with the consequences of staff transfers "in" and "out" on a daily basis. London as a region also has a higher % of private contractors than the rest of the country. We therefore have to represent members in organisations where staff are on hugely different terms and conditions. One employer with 2000 staff has 15 different terms and conditions and 1000 different job descriptions. This will give you a flavour of what is to come unless you organise against it.

And what happens if you have all these workers on different terms and conditions? Apart from the obvious confusion about what annual leave entitlements and what sickness benefits a worker is getting. HR tell us that as a rule of thumb the add on costs to salary for a former local authority employer is £10k per year. For a directly recruited employee the add on cost is £5k. So, do the maths. It is inevitable that the employer will try repeat try and harmonise conditions and get everyone on the same job evaluation and the same terms.

Now, will these jobs be harmonised upwards or downwards? Again conference, do the maths. Regardless of TUPE some employers are trying to slash and burn pay and benefits and bring them down to the lowest possible levels. To be fair, some responsible employers have not done this. But, the inevitable but , what we have found that new terms and conditions tend to penalise already low paid manual and caring roles while rewarding the already higher paid managerial grades.

Conference, this is plea to organise your members against the coming onslaught. I don’t think people get it, they don’t know how bad it will get. They need to know, they need to get ready, they need to be ready to act. Conference, please support this amendment and motion".

I ve posted on this Two Tier Code outcome before here (and pinched the caption).  What do those who say that there is no difference between a Labour government and these CONDEM Tories say now?

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