For some years now, the London Borough of Bexley (LBB) have been engaging with unions such as UNISON about some potential changes to staff terms and conditions of employment. Members at LBB may recall a survey we sent out around a year ago about some of the proposals, which we received a great deal of useful feedback from (thank you!).
When the pandemic first began, this process was paused, but it has recently resumed.
Among the first part of our T&Cs to be reformed is likely to be performance-related pay and bonuses.
We have for many years been making the case for easier incremental progression for staff: the top increment is meant to be the going rate for the job once a staff member has become fully proficient in their role, not something that can only be achieved by staff whose personal circumstances allow them to regularly work ‘above and beyond’ the requirements of their role.
Another T&Cs proposal relates to removing the ‘severance’ element of people’s redundancy pay.
In our Blueprint consultation response (PDF), we made the point that it would be unfair if the senior managers affected were made redundant with a more favourable payout than the staff who would be made redundant subsequently as the restructure process worked its way through the remaining tiers of the organisation.
In the council’s official response to this, they agreed that they did not intend to make these changes until the rest of the reorganisation was complete. We therefore believe that the redundancies under discussion now will still be made under the same terms that senior managers got, including the 25% severance payment.
Negotiations around terms and conditions are ongoing and we will continue to represent our members’ interests in them going forward.