I have covered the Mercer case twice on this site (here and here). The facts are that a union member helped organise a strike that was supported by the union. Later the employer imposed a disciplinary warning on the employee for that act. The union member complained this was a breach of section 146 of … Continue reading Strikes, disciplinary warnings, and freedom of association.
A couple of months I highlighted covered Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy's position that an employer may well act appropriately if they issue a worker a warning if that worker takes part in a campaign of strike action called by a trade union. Thankfully, BEIS' argument - despite the fact that BEIS is … Continue reading Scope of Trade Union Detriment Law Expands
Last week the Employment Appeal Tribunal decided the Unison backed case of Mercer v Alternative Future Group Ltd. In this case a union rep had helped to organise and took part in a strike for the Unison union, and was disciplined by her employer for having done so, being given a disciplinary warning. The union … Continue reading BEIS argues disciplining striking workers may be legitimate and lawful.
The below summary is taken from PCS Union's report on the employment tribunal decision in Williams v DVSA in which the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency was found to have placed Paul Williams at a detriment because of his union activities. Unfortunately a copy of the tribunal judgement does not yet appear to be available. … Continue reading Civil Service employer found to have anti-union animus as it loses employment tribunal case.
In 2002 the European Court of Human Rights decided the case of Wilson v UK and found that UK trade union legislation was contrary the Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights - in particular, at paragraph 48 of Wilson the ECHR found that by permitting employers to use financial incentives to induce … Continue reading Court of Appeal Restricts Effectiveness of Trade Union Negotiation
For most employers where a trade union is recognised there will be a recognition agreement which will detail processes and rights to time off for union reps. However, when those agreements fall down a reps right to time off is based on legislation itself, in this case section 168 of the Trade Union and Labour … Continue reading Facility Time: You need to make a request.
In a recent provocative article for The Guardian the Unite General Secretary Len McCluskey explains the background to a recent Rules change in the Union's constitution that could pave the way for a major showdown with the the next Government (if Conservative led) over its trade union legislation. It is worth posting in it's entirety, … Continue reading So far as may be Lawful
Whenever there is any critical comment on trade unions in the UK mainstream express two words will inexorably find their way into the headline: "Union" and "baron"; especially by titles such The Telegraph, Daily Express, Daily Mail and even the BBC. It is an unfair term designed to present unions as run by unaccountable leaders. … Continue reading Viral Voting and Union Barons
In 2013 the Employment Appeal Tribunal delivered its important judgement on trade union rights in Toal v GB Oils. The case was in the interpretation of the right of a worker to be accompanied at a disciplinary or grievance meeting by a trade union representative of their choosing. Section 10(2) of the Employment Relations Act … Continue reading ACAS Code of Practice after Toal v GB Oils
The reason the PCS Union NEC cancelled suspended elections this year is because of the financial cost. The figure given is that the cost to the Union is £590,000, it is not known how much of that comprises the cost of the NEC elections. Let us say however, that it is £300,000 (half the total). … Continue reading Why trade union elections are expensive
UPDATE - 07 Feb Since the last post the following articles have been posted: Howie Fuller (the now ex-PCS member) writes about the leak of the NEC memo. Rob Williams writes on the Socialist Party's website that PCS had "no option but to implement emergency measures to ensure the ongoing viability of the union." Worker's … Continue reading PCS Elections: Round Up
The decision of the PCS National Executive Committee ‘to suspend’ elections in 2015 has, rightly, proved a controversial one which has generated a lot of debate. The campaign website PCS Democracy Deferred has made a forceful case that the NEC decision is in breach of the union Rules and, further, that members may find a … Continue reading The PCS Union’s Suspension of Elections: A Preliminary View