Ongoing discussions are taking place regarding working with Partners when facilities are closed, a working group has been set up to look at this. In addition, discussion continues regarding the move of the Customer Service Centre to the City Library – a working group has been set up.
Concerns have been raised by members across the service in relation to annual leave, this centres around availability and the length of time staff are having to wait to have leave confirmed. A meeting with the Service Manager and shop stewards is to be arranged.
A Regional Library seminar is to take place and will be held in the Newcastle City Library – this will look at the current issues facing the service and how UNISON responds. Once a date is confirmed further details will be shared.
Budget briefings are taking place across this area but at the time of writing this report no detail has been shared - an update will be provided at Branch Committee
Ongoing discussions are taking place regarding working with Partners when facilities are closed, a working group has been set up to look at this. UNISON re-affirmed the members position that closed should mean closed. In addition to this a further working group has been set up regarding the moving of the Customer Service Centre to the City Library, this was part of the 2013/14 budget and the move is due to take place before March 2017. Clearly members will have concerns regarding the implications of the move, and UNSION are involved in these meetings and are supporting members at this time.
Discussions in this area are ongoing in relation to what services may be available when facilities are closed, a member meeting took place on Friday 1st July and correspondence will be sent to all members in the division to further seek their views on this issue. Tony Durcan – Assistant Director for CCS, has sent a note to all staff regarding this issue and a working group has been set up. Angela Forster has been appointed to the Service Manager post, details are still to be shared regarding the restructuring of posts N7 and above.
A full members’ meeting was called for members across CCS. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss community hubs and job substitution, and the impact of the new rotas (new rotas have been implemented due to the reduced opening hours across the service). At the meeting the following issues were raised
I met with David Fay, Angela Foster and John Dickson to outline the concerns raised. I have also written to David and asked a meeting is convened to discuss the issues and see what measures can be put in place to address them. In addition, the letter also re-affirmed the memberships positon on YHN and Newcastle City Learning staff carrying out any functions outside of their role when CCS services are closed but the shared buildings are open - members stated again this would be seen as job substitution and are in complete opposition to this. A meeting has been arranged for UNISON and management within this area to discuss this.
Details have not yet been shared in relation to the further review of senior management across the service. This information is expected once the service manager is appointment.
Budget proposals have been implemented and as of 9th May new opening hours will operate across the service. The opening hours are greatly reduced, UNISON have been in discussion with management regarding what service is available on the closed days. Management are in discussion with YHN and Newcastle College about providing support on these days. Management had also intended to staff up the services on the closed days to show the public how to use the self-service machines and to allow access to the internet. Staff would have been deployed from other buildings to provide this support. UNISON have been very clear since the discussions began regarding this issue, that closed should mean closed, and no activity should take place. Therefore, to expect staff to show the service users how to carry out a member of staffs’ role was completely unacceptable, in addition it would also bring with it a cost pressure. UNISON were advised that this would only be a temporary measure until further talks took place with YHN and Newcastle City Learning. UNISON advised this was not acceptable and this proposal would need to be withdrawn. In addition we reaffirmed the positon on YHN and Newcastle City Learning staff carrying out any functions outside of their role as this was simply job substitution.
Management have withdrawn the proposals on staffing the centres on closed days. No self-service or internet facilities will be available and a further meeting will be held with UNISON regarding the involvement of YHN and Newcastle City Learning. A meeting is to be arranged for all members in this service to discuss this issue further. The members across this service have stated that if anyone other than a member of staff from within CCS carries out any functions this will be seen as job substitution and it will be something that will be opposed.
As part of a senior management restructure David Fay, Head of Service, is leaving the Council. Tony Durcan, Assistant Director, will now take back responsibility for the service and be supported by a Service Manager, which will be advertised shortly. After the appointment to this post it is expected that there will be a further review of senior management across the service.
Budget proposals for this area included a reduction of 32 FTE across a number of workers groups. 2 workers groups have now been through a selection process and 2.5 FTE (2.5staff) are at risk and support is being provided to members. Staff have received new timetables that reflect the amended opening hours across the service. UNISON have stressed that on the days that the library or customer services are closed then these facilities should not be available to the Public. However management are working with partners who already work within the building to explore the possibility of how the public can continue to access some elements of the service. Further updates will be provided when UNISON receive an update on this issue.
Budget proposals for this area were highlighted in January’s report. These included the intention to dramatically reduce opening hours across all centres, with a reduction of 32 FTE. Proposed opening hours have now been shared and the staff timetables that sit behind these will be available from the end of January. A full members’ meeting has been held, and initial feedback will be provided. Once the timetables are shared another meeting will take place with staff.
Briefings have taken place across CCS, the following proposals were shared -
Library and Customer Service centre opening times to be greatly reduced, reductions will vary but all locations will be affected. Approx. 32 staff will be at risk and all worker groups have been made aware of the numbers from each group. The new opening times will require public consultation and I will meet with David Fay, Head of Service, in this area to discuss these. A meeting will be held with members in January as part of consultation.
A further update regarding how the Branch responds in relation to the proposals will follow this meeting.
A number of outstanding queries were raised with management in this area following a full member meeting, a verbal update has been provided and a written response will be shared with the members, and a member meeting will also be arranged The issues raised were regarding working times, changes to shifts and rotation.
In addition a full round of staff briefings take place in November and it is expected budget proposals will shared at these. UNISON will be present at these.
A full member meeting is this area has taken place to provide a response to queries raised by members regarding recent staff moves, integrated working, working times and staff morale. At the meeting it was requested that UNISON meet again with Management to raise further queries and to seek some points of clarity regarding the response. Once this has happened a further meeting with members will take place. In addition a full round of staff briefings take place in November and UNISON will be present at these.
A second phase of integrated working out of one location has begun. A number of queries were raised with staff and UNISON met with Diane Scott and Mandy Rudd. A response has been provided, a full worker meeting is arranged to discuss this with staff. Members remain concerned about the issues they raised and the working times for some staff. Once this meeting has taken place I will provide feedback to Branch Committee. (Branch Committee minutes, 9 October 2015)
A number of queries were raised with staff and UNISON met with Diane Scott and Mandy Rudd. We are still awaiting an answer to the issues that have been raised.
In addition staff moves are taking place within libraries. Issues have been raised in relation to this and a response has been provided.
A second phase of integrated working out of one location has begun. Some staff have raised queries regarding work patterns and locations.
UNISON has met with management and we are awaiting a response to the issues raised. It may be required to hold an open meeting for staff affected in this area. There is regular dialogue with the reps in this area.
UNISON has stressed that a set of principles needs to be agreed regarding rotas and locations. It is anticipated that set patterns of work will be introduced yet this will not be until the autumn.
UNISON has highlighted that work life balance and flexible working requests will need to be considered.
A second pilot regarding an integrated service offer is being rolled out. This involves staff trained across a number of services being based at one location, the aim of the new roles were that staff would be able to carry out generic functions across libraries, leisure and customer services, however due to the procurement of a leisure trust this now only involves libraries and customer services. We have asked for feedback on the first pilot and will ask for regular updates as the second pilot runs.
15-21 May 2017. The theme this year is Curious and Creative for Learning at Work Week.
Starting 24 April 2017, these courses can be done online or paper based.
Branch nominations and ballot details.
This newsletter includes an update on the changes to the Bereavement Support Payment as well as contact details for ‘Down to Earth’, who provide practical and emotional support throughout the funeral process.
Winners in March.
Executive pay bandwagon rolls on
Cycle courier entitled to holiday pay
Employment law changes this April
New minimum wage rates kick in
UK lags on maternity
Merger heralds new teaching union
Consultation on caste discrimination
New courses for members and stewards.
Inflation leaps to 3.2%
More regulation of gig economy needed
Appalling risk of suicides in construction
Fat cats — the great pay divide
Racist abuse after Brexit vote
Lack of diversity at top in Wales
Papers for the meeting on Monday 3 April.
Meeting on Tuesday 28 March 2017 at 4.30pm.
Nottinghamshire Police have taken the bold step to identify misogyny as a hate crime and Northern UNSION are keen for this to be replicated in our region. The aim of the event is to identify how we can move the issue forward across the region with all three Police and Crime Commissioners.
Swings and scooters of inflation basket
No real improvement in weekly earnings
Cosmetic improvement with Living Wage
Zero-hours contracts at record high
Unemployment falls below 1.6 million
Agenda and annual report.
Economic forecasts in Hammond's Budget
Mixed fortunes in ethnic women's pay gap data
Company merger and acquisitions in 2016
Numbers on zero-hours contracts at a high
GMB take on DX delivery firm
Former chancellor's nice big earner
Charter to stop violence at work
Saturday 25 March. Hear grassroots, union and guest speakers and watch the Reel News film showing the Durham Teaching Assistants’ story.
Saturday 25 March, to plan UNISON LGBT activities for the year ahead.
A joint training session for trade union and community activists on how to organise to defeat the politics of division. 18 March 2017.
March calendar of events and activities.
Trade Union Act regs come into force
Gender pension gap leaves women short
Violence at work — the nasty truth
Bookseller's £7m salary
Money purchase pension are norm
British Gas denied appeal in Lock case
Government fails in ethnicity review
Papers for the meeting on Monday 6 March.
Papers for the retired members' meeting on 17 March.
Winners in February.
Morning seminar and afternoon remembrance service in Hartlepool on Friday 28 April 2017. There is also an Eve of WMD ‘Gig’ on Thursday 27 April.
Government green paper on pensions
A 'Stern diet' for fat cat directors' pay
Employers — don't miss out on talent
Argos repays £2.4 million to 37,000 staff
Economic growth revised upwards
Work fears of disabled people revealed
Migrants have helped make Britain. It’s time to celebrate us
NHS at breaking point, according to British Medical Association
Councils prepare to cut essential services to fund adult social care
London transport spending equivalent to £1,500 more per head than North East
Minimum wage cheats named and shamed
Inflation hits three-year high
Unemployment at 11-year low
Inflation erodes growth in weekly earnings
Migrants are always the scapegoats. But now they’re taking on Ukip’s lies
I, Daniel Blake is a realistic depiction of life on benefits. Isn’t it?
English social care system for elderly facing 'complete collapse'
North East peers want law to make Government investigate impact of Brexit on region
North East recruitment drive revealed as jobless total in region rises
UK employment growth driven by foreign nationals, figures show
The NHS needs a rethink. Its priorities no longer make sense
Top Labour politicians come to 'UKIP area' Sunderland for Brexit debates and festival
Rothbury Community Hospital inpatient ward closure public meeting this week
Shopping will cost you more as prices rise, but is Brexit to blame?
Campaigners calling for u-turn over Post Office move
UK labour shortages reported as EU worker numbers fall
Britons living in the EU face Brexit backlash, leaked paper warns
Then the Daily Mail came for Gary Lineker, and we said: ‘Enough!’
Brexit survey revealed: What you would do if given second shot at EU referendum
Booming gig economy costs £4bn in lost tax and benefit payouts, says TUC
There will be a shameful betrayal of the Brexit low-paid
Welcome to the new dark ages, where only the wealthy can retire
NHS 'pays £7.5m a year for 20 most expensive agency doctors'
Drive to bring health and social care together is a well-intentioned mess
Sunderland, 19/20 May 2017.
Sign Language (BSL) Introduction, 2 March 2017
Dementia Workshop, 30 March 2017
Regional Education Calendar 2017
A&E in England had worst delays ever in January, leak suggests
Why was Newcastle Council leader Nick Forbes the star of Prime Minister's questions?
Number of patients stuck in hospital 'far higher than NHS data shows'
It's time corporate tax dodgers started losing lucrative council contracts
More council housing needed in the North East - government report reveals
Council tax, youth funding and bins: 6 things to look out for from Sunderland budget meeting
TyneMet and South Tyneside colleges merger: What it means for jobs, campuses and its new name?
Review of tribunal fees finally published
Plan to tackle abusive hiring practices
Insecure work on rise
Twenty eight directors share £68.37 million
A list of affiliations and donations that the branch committee has approved since January 2015.
UK faces return to inequality of Thatcher years, says report
NHS ID scheme could deter eligible patients, say MPs
Councils may cut social care provision due to underfunding, LGA says
Nursery schools: ‘What society gives children less chance than their parents?’
Council tax rise planned for Northumberland residents as authority faces £36m cuts
'Trump can't hack Trebs' - the best signs from Newcastle anti-Trump demonstration
Racism at work
Economy grows but there's a shortfall
Advice on gender pay gap from Acas
Tories offer no solution on discrimination
Eight assaults a day in Welsh schools
A quarterly periodical updating branch reps on employment law.
Winners in January.
Northern Region Young Members AGM
UNISON Northern Region Black Members Forum AGM 2017.
Discounted car insurance for UNISON members.
In Newcastle on Saturday 4 February.
Papers for the meeting on 6 February.
Death by a thousand fire service cuts
Guidance on stress
Modern-day slave traders jailed
Fees let bad bosses get off scot free
Top-ranked inclusive employers 2017
Get tough on pay, says pension funds
Agenda and nomination form for the mmeting on 4 February.
Annual Meeting of the Regional Disabled Members Self Organised Group on Tuesday 31 January 2017.
Mental Health Awareness Workshop on Thursday 16 February.
Wales to ditch parts of 2016 Trade Union Act
Inflation rates at highest since 2014
Retail inflation eating into earnings growth
UK unemployment at nine-year low
Public sector pay poised to fall by thousands in real terms, TUC says
May’s promise on workers’ rights is hollow if she doesn’t get a deal
NHS crisis: the one act of self-sacrifice that could rescue our health service
Politicians have ignored the working class for too long
World's eight richest people have same wealth as poorest 50%
Crisis, what NHS crisis? Theresa May must stop this denial
Welsh government tables bill to overturn Trade Union Act
UNISON have now been allocated two spots on the 16 January to have guided tours around the Anne Frank exhibition.
Courier's tribunal win against CitySprint
TUC warns over Brexit threat to workers' rights
Lame excuses for not paying minimum wage
High street store fined over safety
Manufacturing output edges higher
Child poverty briefing
Winners in December.
Consultation on political fund review: December-January
We are having our first Reading Ahead launch at Welford Learning Zone on 11 January between 10am and 11am.
Book now to secure your place on one of the courses for Reps at Newcastle College starting in January 2017.
UNISON courses in 2017. These courses are free and open to all members unless otherwise stated.
'Precarious pay penalty' of zero-hours staff
Plans for a Universal Basic Income
2017 — economic forecasts for year
'Fat Cat Wednesday' has been and gone
Northern Ireland to reveal political gifts
UK's deficit in trade in goods gets ever worse
UK economic growth revised upwards