Labour Research Department

The Labour Research Department exists to co-operate with Labour, Socialist and Co-operative movements in promoting and carrying out research into problems of importance to the labour, to supply information, and to issue publications.    (LRD constitution 1912)

Founded in July 1912 LRD has maintained the principles embodied in its initial statement throughout the last 95 years, and provided its affiliates with a wealth of information and research.


FACT Service

Fact Service provides a concise update of the latest developments for union negotiators. It gives full details of the latest official statistics on prices, earnings and unemployment, as they appear, as well as coverage of key economic and industrial issues as they happen.

You can subscribe to this and many other publications on the LRD website publications page.

The branch subscribes to the weekly FACT bulletin which is sent to stewards by email and there is a list of the contents of each issue below.

Contact your steward or the the branch office if you want to read an article.


ooOoo

Volume 79, Issue 12, 23 March 2017

Inflation leaps to 3.2%

In February, the Retail Prices Index (RPI) stood at 268.4 and the annual rate of inflation rose to 3.2% from the 2.6% the previous month. RPI inflation was last higher in August 2013.

More regulation of gig economy needed

Almost two-thirds (63%) of respondents who work in the gig economy think the government should regulate it to guarantee them basic employment rights and benefits such as holiday pay, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

Appalling risk of suicides in construction

The risk of suicide among low skilled male labourers, particularly those working on construction, was much higher than the male national average, a new analysis by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) finds.

Fat cats — the great pay divide

Chief executives of the UK’s top 100 companies now pocket an average of £5.3 million each year, or 386 times that of a worker earning the National Living Wage, according to The Equality Trust.

Racist abuse after Brexit vote

Over a third (34%) of black, Asian or minority ethnic people (BAME) witnessed or experienced racial abuse in the seven months following the Brexit vote in June 2016, a TUC poll has found.

Lack of diversity at top in Wales

Wales remains a country where major decisions are being taken that are not reflective of our country’s diversity, a new report published by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has found.

Volume 79, Issue 11, 16 March 2017

Swings and scooters of inflation basket

This year, 14 items have been added to the basket and nine removed.

No real improvement in weekly earnings

Workers living standards saw further cuts as earnings growth continued its fall, while retail inflation has been on the rise.

Cosmetic improvement with Living Wage

It may be lush as they say in the South West, as cosmetics group Lush is to pay all of its permanent employees in the UK, including retail and manufacturing staff, the voluntary Living Wage from April.

Zero-hours contracts at record high

The number of people employed on zero-hours contracts in their main job, during October to December 2016 was 905,000, or 2.8% of people in employment, according to Labour Force Survey (LFS) figures.

Unemployment falls below 1.6 million

The number of unemployed people fell by 31,000 to 1.58 million in the three-month period ending January 2017, the Labour Force Survey figures show.

Volume 79, Issue 10, 9 March 2017

Economic forecasts in Hammond's Budget

Chancellor Philip Hammond made his first and last March Budget statement, as the main announcements now move to an autumn Budget.

Mixed fortunes in ethnic women's pay gap data

An analysis of the gender pay gap by ethnicity, by the women’s campaigning group, the Fawcett Society, reveals inequalities over the past 25 years or so, with some minority ethnic groups making great strides, while pay for others lags far behind.

Company merger and acquisitions in 2016

The number of merger and acquisitions (M&A) involving UK companies was down, but their value was up, according to the latest official figures.

Numbers on zero-hours contracts at a high

The number of people on zero-hours contracts in the UK has hit a record high of 910,000 but there are signs the trend may have reached a peak, according to a leading think tank.

GMB take on DX delivery firm

The GMB general union is to take legal action is on behalf of members working as couriers for delivery company DX.

Former chancellor's nice big earner

Former chancellor George Osborne has been busy on the lucrative speaker’s tour since being sacked as chancellor. And he’s picked up a nice big earner from a financial services group.

Charter to stop violence at work

A “Violence at Work Charter”, which would see employers commit themselves to “a series of interventions” to reduce the number of violent incidents against staff, is to be launched by the public service union UNISON.

Volume 79, Issue 9, 2 March 2017

Trade Union Act regs come into force

From 1 March, higher ballot thresholds must be met before trade unions can proceed with industrial action, particularly in relation to “important public services”, will come into force.

Gender pension gap leaves women short

There is a gap between the amount that men and women receive in employer pensions contributions, which if left unaddressed could result in a shortfall of £47,000 by the end of a woman’s working life, according to a new indicator from financial services group Zurich.

Violence at work — the nasty truth

There were an estimated 698,000 incidents of work-related violence in 2015-16, according to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Bookseller's £7m salary

Waterstones, the UK’s leading bookshop chain, has been in the headlines, and on the defensive, after going incognito at some of its newer stores.

Money purchase pension are norm

Defined contribution pensions, also known as money purchase schemes, are now the norm for Britain’s biggest companies, new research from financial services group Willis Towers Watson.

British Gas denied appeal in Lock case

The Supreme Court — the final court of appeal in civil cases — has refused British Gas the right to appeal in the long, drawn out Lock holiday pay case.

Government fails in ethnicity review

An independent review has set out recommendations for employers in the public and private sectors to improve diversity within their organisations.

Volume 79, Issue 8, 23 February 2017

Government green paper on pensions

It ain’t broke, but we still might tinker with it, might be a rough summary of the government’s green paper on the regulation of defined benefit (DB) pension schemes.

A 'Stern diet' for fat cat directors' pay

A major rethink of corporate governance is neededto improve chief executive (CEO) pay transparency and ensure company boards recognise their broader responsibility towards the workforce when decisions on executive pay and business investment are made.

Employers — don't miss out on talent

A simple step-by-step guide to open recruitment has been published by the Department for Work and Pensions.

Argos repays £2.4 million to 37,000 staff

Catalogue retailer Argos is to provide back pay to 37,000 current and former store employees after they were found to have been paid below the statutory National Living Wage rate prior to December 2016.

Economic growth revised upwards

The second official estimate for growth in gross domestic product (GDP) puts growth at 0.7%, rather than 0.6% in the final quarter of 2016 compared with the previous quarter.

Work fears of disabled people revealed

Disabled people fear losing their jobs and hide impairments to stay in work, according to the charity Scope.

Volume 79, Issue 7, 16 February 2017

Minimum wage cheats named and shamed

The government has named and shamed 359 businesses which have failed to pay the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

Inflation hits three-year high

In January, the Retail Prices Index (RPI) stood at 265.5 and the annual rate of inflation rose to 2.6% from the 2.5% at the end of 2016. RPI inflation was last higher in February 2014.

Unemployment at 11-year low

In the three month period October to December 2016, the number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 7,000 to 1.6 million. The number of unemployed people under this count was last lower in February 2006.

Inflation erodes growth in weekly earnings

In December 2016, growth in average weekly earnings was just 1.9% against a revised rise for November of 2.9%.

Volume 79, Issue 6, 9 February 2017

Review of tribunal fees finally published

The long-awaited government review of the introduction of employment tribunal fees has finally been published by the Ministry of Justice. And it's a whitewash.

Plan to tackle abusive hiring practices

A letter of intent to strengthen their collaboration on tackling abusive recruitment practices that trick workers into modern slavery and forced labour has been signed by the International Labour Organisation and the Gangmasters Licensing Authority

Insecure work on rise

The number of people in insecure work has increased by more a quarter over the past five years, according to new research commissioned and published by the TUC.

Twenty eight directors share £68.37 million

The reporting season for companies is starting again and so their remuneration reports are revealing the latest pay packages given to top executives at stock exchange-quoted companies.

Volume 79, Issue 5, 2 February 2017

Racism at work

Employers need to take urgent action to identify and stamp out racist behaviour in the workplace, according to a report from the University of Manchester.

Economy grows but there's a shortfall

The economy has grown over the last three quarters of 2016, but with no change in pace.

Advice on gender pay gap from Acas

Useful guidance on the new gender pay gap regulations has been published by the employment relation service Acas.

Tories offer no solution on discrimination

The government’s long overdue response to the Women and Equalities Select Committee report on pregnancy and maternity discrimination has been slated by the TUC.

Eight assaults a day in Welsh schools

Teachers and other school staff in Welsh schools have been the victims of over 4,700 physical and verbal attacks by pupils over the past three academic years — or eight assaults a day — according to the National Union of Teachers (NUT).

Volume 79, Issue 4, 26 January 2017

Death by a thousand fire service cuts

The number of people who have died as a result of fires has increased by 15%, according to the Fire statistics monitor published by the Home Office.

Guidance on stress

The TUC has, in conjunction with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), produced a new guide to help trade union health and safety representatives tackle workplace stress.

Modern-day slave traders jailed

Two brothers who trafficked people from Poland to the UK and forced them to work have each been jailed for six years.

Fees let bad bosses get off scot free

Punitive fees for employment tribunals are allowing bad bosses to get away with shocking treatment of workers.

Top-ranked inclusive employers 2017

Lloyds Banking Group has been named the most inclusive employer in Britain by lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) charity Stonewall in its Top 100 Employers list for 2017.

Get tough on pay, says pension funds

The Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) has called on investors to take a tougher stance on those who set executive pay policy.

Volume 79, Issue 3, 19 January 2017

Wales to ditch parts of 2016 Trade Union Act

Rules making it harder to call strikes in public services will be scrapped in Wales if the Welsh government has its way.

Inflation rates at highest since 2014

Price inflation has hit its highest level for nigh on two and a half years.

Retail inflation eating into earnings growth

In November 2016, growth in average weekly earnings stalled with a 2.8% rise against the previous month’s revised rise of 2.9%.

UK unemployment at nine-year low

In the three month period September to November 2016, the overall number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 52,000 to 1.6 million compared with the previous three-month period’s figure of 1.66 million.

Volume 79, Issue 2, 12 January 2017

Courier's tribunal win against CitySprint

An employment tribunal has found that a CitySprint bicycle courier should be classed as a worker, rather than self-employed.

TUC warns over Brexit threat to workers' rights

At the end of last year the TUC called on the prime minister Theresa May to make clear to Britain’s bosses that any watering down of workers’ rights following Brexit is off the table.

Lame excuses for not paying minimum wage

Ten of the worst excuses given by unscrupulous bosses found to have underpaid workers the National Minimum Wage have been revealed by the government.

High street store fined over safety

National chain store Wilko has been fined £2.2 million after a worker was crushed and left paralysed just over a year after it was fined over the death of a worker.

Manufacturing output edges higher

Factory output increased by 0.3% in the three months to November compared with the previous three months. That was, the first time in four months that output has increased.

Child poverty briefing

A useful guide to child poverty was produced by the House of Commons Library just before the topic was debated in parliament in mid-December 2016

Volume 79, Issue 1, 5 January 2017

'Precarious pay penalty' of zero-hours staff

Workers on zero-hours contracts face a "precarious pay penalty" of almost 7% — or £1,000 a year for a typical worker — compared to similar workers doing similar jobs, according to new analysis from the Resolution Foundation.

Plans for a Universal Basic Income

Scotland is poised to join Finland and Canada in testing Universal Basic Income (UBI), a welfare system in which all citizens are given a fixed sum of money, regardless of their income or employment status.

2017 — economic forecasts for year

It looks like a tough bargaining year for negotiators if the forecasts for the economy collated by the Treasury prove correct.

'Fat Cat Wednesday' has been and gone

Top executives will already have made more money by the first Wednesday of 2017 — 4 January — than the typical UK worker will earn all year.

Northern Ireland to reveal political gifts

Belfast City councillors have voted in support of a call to reveal the names of those who make large donations to Northern Ireland politicians.

UK's deficit in trade in goods gets ever worse

The UK’s trading position with the rest of the world — in terms of goods — has reached another record deficit.

UK economic growth revised upwards

Britain’s economy grew faster than previously thought in the three months after the EU referendum, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.

Volume 78, Issue 49, 8 December 2016

UK inflation rate hits two-year high

In November, the Retail Prices Index (RPI) stood at 265.5 and the annual rate of inflation rose to 2.2% from the 2.0% the previous month. That’s the highest rate since October 2014. Dearer clothing and petrol contributed to the rise. The RPI is the favoured inflation measure for union negotiators.

Unemployment down but levelling off

The UK recorded a fall in unemployment in the latest three-month period but the labour market seems to have flattened off recently.

Rise in average weekly earnings growth

In October, growth in average weekly earnings was up to 2.8% from the previous month’s revised figure of 2.6%.

Few use right to Shared Parental Leave

The low take-up of Shared Parental Leave (SPL) and the lack of affordable childcare options for parents with very young children are major problems that need to be addressed to support working parents more effectively, according to a new report from the CIPD, the professional body for HR.

Volume 78, Issue 49, 8 December 2016

Rents drag working families into poverty

A total of 7.4 million people, including 2.6 million children, are in poverty despite being in a working family is the latest stark finding of poverty campaigners, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF).

Worrying ignorance on asbestos in schools

A shocking lack of consistency across different local authority areas over the continuing presence of deadly asbestos in schools is revealed in responses to recent Freedom of Information requests, and should set alarm bells ringing across central and local government.

TUC attacks cap on small claims

In an appalling attack on workers’ rights, the government is planning to change the rules for compensation claims that would make it much more difficult for workers to get the money they are entitled to when their employer’s negligence injures them or makes them ill, according to TUC health and safety officer Hugh Robertson.

Government shunts Network Rail off track

Rail unions have slammed proposals from transport secretary Chris Grayling to allow the private train operating companies and other firms to run sections of Britain’s infrastructure.

Takeovers down in number, up in value

There was a slowing in merger and acquisition (M&A) activity in the third quarter of the year compared with the second quarter,official figures show.

Manufacturing output shrinks again

Factory output fell by 0.3% in the three months to October compared with the previous three months. That is, however, an improvement on the three months to September when the contraction was 0.8%.

Volume 78, Issue 48, 1 December  2016

Gig economy comes under scrutiny

The government has announced a consultation on the gig economy, which will be headed Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Royal Society of Arts.

UK economy — 0.5% growth confirmed

The latest estimate for growth in the UK economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), was unchanged at 0.5% for the third quarter.

Executive pay and corporate governance

Companies will need to justify high levels of executive pay under plans outlined in a government green paper.

Minimum wage rises from next April

The Low Pay Commission, which recommends rise in the statutory minimum wage rates, has had its recommendations for rates from 1 April 2017 accepted by the government.

Gender pay gap in London's public sector

The Greater London Authority (GLA) has a gender pay gap of 4.6%, according to the authority’s latest gender pay audit.

Suspended prison sentences over safety

The director of a Port Talbot furniture factory and three of its managers/shareholders have received suspended prison sentences for ongoing health and safety failings.

Volume 78, Issue 47, 24 November  2016

Hammond's first and last Autumn Statement

Delivering his first Autumn Statement, the Tory chancellor, Philip Hammond, claimed that the UK is “resilient”, despite forecasts that government finances will be much worse off than previously expected by 2020.

Disability-related sickness top issue

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of the union reps responding to the TUC’s 2016 Equality Audit said that disability- related sickness absence was the number one equality issue they dealt with at work.

CitySprint latest gig economy target

The delivery firm CitySprint is the latest UK business to be involved in a legal dispute over the gig economy and whether it should treat its freelance couriers as workers.

May in reverse over workers on boards

Prime minister Theresa May appears to have backtracked on her pledge to have workers on company boards.

Young face social mobility problem

Social mobility in Britain is getting worse for young people, with many trapped in low-paid jobs

Survey on risks of cleaning agents

New and more powerful cleaning products are becoming more and more common in the workplace — but how do the chemicals they contain affect people’s health and safety?

Volume 78, Issue 46, 17 November  2016

Lower housings costs keep inflation at 2.0%

In October, retail price inflation was unchanged on the previous month, Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show.

Unemployment falls

The UK recorded a fall in unemployment in the third quarter, as the unemployment rate hit an 11- year low.

September boost for average earnings

In September, growth in average weekly earnings was up to 2.5% from the previous month’s revised rise of 2.1%.

UK worst in OECD for investment in transport

The UK ranks towards the bottom of OECD countries for capital investment in important areas of economic development, according to a recent TUC analysis.

Volume 78, Issue 45, 10 November  2016

New rates for voluntary Living Wage

New voluntary Living Wage rates for London and elsewhere were announced at the start of Living Wage Week.

Theatre of austerity

The general union Unite and its Community membership section have used the power of theatre to stimulate the debate about austerity Britain.

Unions take on gig economy firms

Trade unions are using the courts to take on employers in the gig economy over the bogus self-employment of the workforce.

Fall in tribunal claims

The TUC has condemned the huge cost of taking a tribunal which allows bad bosses to get away with discrimination and unfair treatment.

Factory output down in third quarter

Manufacturing output fell by 0.9% in the third quarter of the year, the first three-month period after the EU referendum vote.

Two families win in courts over bedroom tax

The country’s highest court, the Supreme Court, has ruled that the government discriminated against a disabled woman and her husband and a severely disabled child who needs overnight care through the implementation of the “bedroom tax”.

Volume 78, Issue 44, 3 November  2016

Widespread benefits of union training

More than three-quarters of employers say union-led training programmes have a positive effect in their workplaces, according to an independent review.

Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings 2016

Full-time average weekly earnings increased in real terms, while the gender pay gap closed by a small margin in April 2016, official figures show.

Economy grows in third quarter

The economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), is estimated to have increased by 0.5% in July-September quarter compared with growth of 0.7% in second quarter (April to June 2016).

Give boost to childcare, say employers

Chancellor Philip Hammond should spend another £2 billion a year on childcare to get more women into work, boosting the economy as well as opening up options for new parents, the CBI employers’ organisation has urged.

Academies links with trustees' businesses

More than one in three academy trusts have declared related-party transactions and paid money to businesses with links to staff and trustees.

Volume 78, Issue 43, 27 October  2016

Investigation into grey area of self-employment

News of an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) into pay rates for delivery drivers at courier company Hermes means a spotlight will be shone on the grey area surrounding employment status and statutory minimum wage rates.

Government U-turn on safety appointment

The government will be advertising a new seat for a worker’s representative on the Health and Safety Executive board, says TUC health and safety officer Hugh Robertson.

Low pay in the UK 2016

There were an estimated 362,000 jobs with pay of less than the National Minimum Wage (NMW) or National Living Wage (NLW) held by employees aged 16 and over in April 2016, which constituted 1.3% of UK employee jobs, official figures show.

Self-employment or precarious work?

The typical earnings of the average self-employed person are lower than 20 years ago, according to the Resolution Foundation think tank.

Bullying a worrying problem in NHS

Bullying is a pernicious problem in the NHS. That’s the stark finding of research by the Guardian.

It may not be marriage guidance but it's helpful

Employment relations service Acas has produced useful guidance on marriage and civil partnerships and the workplace.

Pay protection a reasonable adjustment

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) has ruled, in the case of G4S Cash Solutions vs Powell, that pay protection could be counted as a reasonable adjustment in certain circumstances.

Volume 78, Issue 42, 20 October  2016

Weak average weekly earnings growth

Pay growth has weakened, official figures show. In August, growth in average weekly earnings was down to 2.0% from the previous month’s revised rise of 2.4%.

Low pay in government

Thousands of workers across central government are paid less than the voluntary Living Wage, new figures have revealed in responses to an MP's parliamentary written questions.

Jobless numbers on the rise in summer

Blips or not, unemployment on both of the main official counts posted increases, the latest official figures show.

Safety and health at work week

Healthy workplaces for all ages is the central theme of the 2016 European Week for Safety and Health at Work, which takes place from 24 to 28 October.

Pricier fuel and clothing pushes inflation higher

Retail price inflation rose in September on the back of dearer fuel and clothing, Office for National Statistics figures show.

Volume 78, Issue 41, 13 October  2016

Shift workers more prone to disease

Workers are more susceptible to infection at certain times of the day as the body clock affects the ability of viruses to replicate and spread between cells, new research from the University of Cambridge suggests.

Lucky 13 in boardroom

The company reporting season has all but come to an end, so the latest list of £1 million earners at FTSE 350 companies numbers only 13.

Manufacturing output still weak

The latest data shows factory output contracted in the three months to August.

Firms sign Dying to Work charter

Santander bank is the latest high-profile employer to sign up to the Dying to Work Voluntary Charter, following in the footsteps of companies such as E.On, Legal and General, and Carillion Rail.

Perils of hard Brexit for UK car industry

Investment decisions by major carmakers on theproduction of up to 15 new models in the UK are “hanging by a thread” unless the government secures tariff free access to the European single market, according to a report by the Unite general union, which represents over 500,000 manufacturing workers.

Commission and holiday pay ruling

The Court of Appeal has confirmed that holiday pay calculations should include a representative amount of commission-based pay.

UK's record deficit in trade in goods

The UK’s trading position with the rest of the world in goods reached a record deficit of £34.7 billion in the second quarter of the year.

Volume 78, Issue 40, 6 October  2016

Majority ignored on public sector exit pay

The government has published its response to the consultation about reforms to public sector exit payments, which will see the lowest paid hit hardest.

Long wait for gender pay gap to close

The gender pay gap in the UK will not close until 2069 based on current salary progression, research suggests.

Sick leave benefits across Europe

The United Kingdom and Ireland offer far worse sickness benefits than most other European nations.

How to shrink the great divide in UK

The great divide between the haves and have-nots in the UK is set out in a media briefing by Oxfam.

Women's mental health needs ignored

Mental health services across England are not adequately considering the needs of female mental health patients, according to the charity Agenda, which has just launched their mental health campaign, Women in Mind.

How to claim benefits for industrial injuries

The TUC has produced a useful short guide to the Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB) Scheme.

Volume 78, Issue 39, 29 September  2016

Top hazards mentioned by safety reps

Long hours has replaced slips, trips and falls as one of the five most frequently cited hazards at work by safety reps, according to the TUC’s 11th biennial safety representatives’ survey.

Auto-enrolment pushes up pension figures

Last year, membership of occupational pension schemes reached its highest level recorded in the Office for National Statistics (ONS) annual survey.

Prospect grows

The specialists’ union Prospect is set to grow as members of APFO, the Association of Principal Fire Officers, have voted overwhelmingly to become a branch of the union. The ballot saw 89% of those who took part vote in favour of the proposal.

Minimum wage rises

On 1 October, the National Minimum Wage (NMW) for workers aged between 21 and 25 rises by 3.7% or 25p an hour to £6.70 an hour.

Apprenticeships — getting it right

The Department for Education (DfE) is expanding the apprenticeships programme, while making it increasingly employer-led and employer-funded.

How much of £86.9m is executive excess?

Twenty-six executives were given remuneration packages worth £86.93 million in total in our latest list of FTSE 350 directors with packages worth in excess of £1 million.

Volume 78, Issue 38, 22 September  2016

MPs to examine boardroom pay

A committee of MPs has launched an inquiry into corporate governance, focussing on executive pay, directors’ duties, and the composition of boardrooms, including worker representation and gender balance in executive positions.

Dress codes need a redesign for today

An outdated attitude towards people with tattoos could lead to employers missing out on young talent, as about one in three young people have a tattoo, the employment relations service Acas says.

Care firms targeted over illegal wages

Homecare workers employed across the London Borough of Haringey — and backed by public services union UNISON — are taking care companies and the council to court in a dispute involving illegal wages, over the widespread non-payment of the minimum wage.

Workplace inspections on missing list

Nearly half of UK workplaces have never had a health and safety inspection — including more than 80% of construction workplaces — according to a new TUC survey of health and safety reps.

Shortfall in out-of-school services

Extended school services are failing to match parents’ need for afterschool and holiday childcare, a new report from the Family and Childcare Trust and the CPAG Child Poverty Action Group warns.

Volume 78, Issue 37, 15 September  2016

Earnings growth dip

In July, growth in average weekly earnings was down to 2.2% from the previous month’s revised

Unemployment among women falls

The fall in the number of unemployed women more than compensated for the rise in the men’s total, Office for National Statistics figures show.

Retail inflation down

The retail inflation rate fell in August, while the consumer measure was steady, Office for National Statistics figures show.

Campaigners set out how to solve poverty

The government should raise taxes on the wealthy to finance a £15 billion annual investment in affordable housing, free childcare and enhanced social security benefits to eradicate poverty in the UK, campaigners say in a report, We can solve poverty.

Volume 78, Issue 36, 8 September  2016

Boardroom delight

The 2015-16 reporting season for top companies quoted in the FTSE 350 index is drawing to an end. However, the ratcheting up of the remuneration packages that top executives draw at these companies show no sign of diminishing.

Manufacturing output weakens in July

Manufacturing output was only 0.5% higher in the three months to July on the previous three months, down on the 1.6% growth in the three months ending June.

Tory contempt for health and safety

The government’s appointment of a former business leader to a seat on the board of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that is reserved for a representative of workers’ interests has appalled union leaders.

Forced retirement for one in eight

Around one in eight (12%) men and women are forced to stop working before state pension age due to ill-health or disability, according to new TUC research.

Decline in UK mergers and takeovers

The second quarter of 2016 saw notable declines in the number and value of successful mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving UK companies saw notable declines when compared the first quarter of the year.

Volume 78, Issue 35, 1 September  2016

Learning lessons from EU referendum debate

“Dire” — that’s the blunt view of the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) on the EU referendum debate.

Youth unemployment still stubbornly high

Youth unemployment remains high in certain regions and sectors across the UK, a new report finds.

Action plan to help new and expectant mothers

UK women should have protections similar to those in Germany after a “shocking” increase in workplace pregnancy discrimination over the past decade, a committee of MPs says.

GMB files claims against Addison Lee

The GMB general union has instructed law firm Leigh Day to take the first step in launching legal proceedings on behalf of three workers of private car hire firm Addison Lee whose contracts were terminated following a GMB protest in London in May.

BECTU to merge with Prospect in 2017

BECTU, the media and entertainment union, is to merge with Prospect next year after its membership voted decisively in favour of joining forces with the professionals’ union.

Economy grows in second quarter

In its second estimate of gross domestic product, the Office for National Statistics said the economy, increased by 0.6% in the April-June quarter on the previous quarter. The growth figure is unrevised on the preliminary estimate published at the end of July.

Volume 78, Issue 34, 25 August  2016

Shift workers are more susceptible to disease

Shift workers may be more prone to infections and chronic diseases due to disruptions to their body clocks, researchers from the University of Cambridge suggest.

Motherhood's penalty

Women suffer a “motherhood wage penalty” that sees their pay fall, relative to men, for more than adecade after having children, new research finds.

MPs call for ban on plastic microbeads

The use of plastic microbeads in bathroom products -— such as exfoliating scrubs, shaving gel and toothpaste — should be banned because of the marine pollution they cause, say MPs.

Underemployment of BAME workers

Black, Asian and minority ethnic workers are a third more likely to be underemployed than white workers, a new TUC report finds.

Scottish public sector deficit unchanged

Scotland’s public spending deficit remained at about £15 billion in the past financial year ending March 2016 despite plummeting oil revenues, official figures show.

Acas guidance for young workers

On the day that many young people will received their GCSE results and consider moving into work, employment relations service Acas has published guidance for them.

Blacklisting hit for Carillion

The cost of blacklisting compensation is revealed in the half-year results of contractor Carillion.

Volume 78, Issue 33, 18 August  2016

Unemployment down

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 52,000 to 1.64 million in the three months to June, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Earnings growth static

In June, growth in average weekly earnings was unchanged on the previous month’s rise. The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 2.2%.

Minimum wage offenders named

Nigh on 200 employers that failed to pay their workers the statutory National Minimum Wage have been publicly named and shamed.

Briefing on new housing Act

The 2016 Housing and Planning Act is a missed opportunity that will have a severe impact on the provision of housing in England, warns public services union UNISON.

Cost of living in the UK on the rise

Both retail price inflation and consumer price inflation posted increases in July.

Volume 78, Issue 32, 11 August  2016

No pay restraint in UK boardrooms

The latest annual survey of the pay packages of chief executives of the top FTSE100 companies by the High Pay Centre reveals that rewards at the top continue to grow at a double digit rate.

'Hypocrisy' of Post Office bosses

Paula Vennells, chief executive of the Post Office, has come under sharp criticism after substantial increase in her earnings was revealed in the company’s annual report.

Half of women suffer sexual harassment

More than half (52%) of women, and nearly two thirds (63%) of women aged 18-24 years old, said they have experienced sexual harassment at work, according to new research from the TUC in collaboration with the Everyday Sexism Project.

Councils need greater powers to build houses

Millions of working people will no longer be able to afford somewhere decent to live by 2024 and will need access to some type of affordable housing, the Local Government Association (LGA) warns.

Factory output expands

Manufacturing output was 1.8% higher in the quarter ending June than the previous quarter ending March.

Volume 78, Issue 31, 4 August  2016

Cut in interest rates

UK interest rates have been cut to a record low of 0.25% by the Bank of England.

Days lost to strikes at very low level

The number of working days lost to industrial action in 2015 was the second lowest annual total since records began in 1891, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

Voluntary Living Wage needs revision

The voluntary Living Wage needs to be calculated with a clear and transparent methodology if it is to deliver on its aim of raising living standards and further differentiating itself from the National Living Wage introduced by former chancellor George Osborne, according a report from the Resolution Foundation.

Rise in value of council outsourcing contracts

The value of outsourcing contracts signed by UK local authorities in the first half of 2016 increased by 84%, despite a dip in the value of overall public sector spend.

Search for gig economy in UK

Digital services and platforms are disrupting the way labour markets work throughout the world. The emergence of the “gig economy” is part of this disruption, says the Work Foundation think tank.

National scandal of homecare wage cheats

Failure to honour the statutory National Minimum Wage is endemic across the care sector as many homecare workers are unpaid for the time taken in travel between home visits — which can be up to a fifth of their working day, says the public services union UNISON.

Volume 78, Issue 30, 28 July  2016

Union political funds bring in more income

The number of members contributing to their union’s political fund has fallen, but income and expenditure have risen, according to the latest annual report of the union watchdog, the Certification Officer.

Progress needed on transgender equality

Rather belatedly, the government has responded to the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee's report on transgender equality that was published in January 2016. The response, says the TUC’s Touchstone blog, is “underwhelming.

Economy grows in second quarter

The economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), is estimate to have increased by 0.6% in April-June quarter compared with growth of 0.4% in first quarter (January to March 2016).

Green family used BHS as milch cow

A litany of failures culminating in a disposal of company “at any cost” to a wholly unsuitable “chancer” is detailed in a House of Commons select committee report on the failure of retail giant BHS.

Lack of progress on disability rights

A new national effort to promote disability rights is needed as “progress has stalled”, said David Isaac, chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

Workers should take care in heat of the sun

The appearance of the sun and the rise in temperature has also brought out useful reminders for workers of the risks associated with exposure to solar radiation and how to keep cool.

Volume 78, Issue 29, 21 July  2016

Earnings growth dips

In May, growth in average weekly earnings slipped back. The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally down to 2.1% against the higher revised figure of 2.6% for April.

Air fares fuel inflation

Both retail price inflation and consumer price inflation posted increases in June

UK's 'badge of shame' on disability rights

A new national effort to promote disability rights is needed as “progress has stalled”, says the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

Unemployment hits 11-year low as numbers fall

The UK unemployment rate has fallen to a new 11 year-low, official figures show.

Volume 78, Issue 28, 14 July  2016

More top executives on £1m or more a year

Thirty-two executives whose remuneration package came to over £1 million a year feature this week. The figures are released as the new prime minister, Theresa May, promises changes on corporate governance, including boardroom pay.

How deal with issue of fatigue

Fatigue, both long-term, chronic fatigue and acute fatigue or sleepiness, is a major problem for many workers, according to TUC guidance.

Manufacturing boost

Factory output expanded in the three months to May, official figures show. Manufacturing output was 1.3% higher than the previous three months.

NLW — the first 100 days and a crisis

So far , so good, in the first 100 days since the introduction of the National Living Wage (NLW) — the higher National Minimum Wage (NMW) for workers aged 25 and over — according to an analysis by the Resolution Foundation, with no reduction in employment. But is everything at work so rosy?

Below par academies

One in five established sponsored academy chains (eight out of 39) are performing substantially below the national average for attainment and improvement for disadvantaged pupils, according to a new analysis published by the Sutton Trust charity.

Volume 78, Issue 27, 7 July  2016

Forty executives living in ££££ land

Another tranche of 40 top executives whose remuneration packages was over £1 million feature in the table. These 40 packages totalled £101.38 million, giving an average package of £2.53 million.

Rise in deaths at work

The overall number of workers fatally injured at work in Great Britain rose for a second successive year, according to the latest official figures.

Mesothelioma and its deadly toll

The number of deaths from mesothelioma, a form of cancer that develops following the inhalation of asbestos fibres, continues to run at over 2,500 a year, official figures show.

Poverty rise in the UK

The levels and rates of poverty in the UK, including forecasts for future years, have been set out in a House of Commons Library research paper.

Three more join Living Wage family

Majestic Wine, TSB and Brecon Carreg have joined the 2,600 other employers who voluntarily choose to pay the higher Living Wage rates in London (£9.40 an hour) and the rest of the UK (£8.25 an hour) because this ensures that all their staff earn enough to live on.

Volume 78, Issue 26, 30 June  2016

UK economy grows

The UK economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), grew by 0.4% in the first quarter of 2016 compared with the previous quarter. That's no change on previous estimates.

Narrow majority for exit in EU referendum

There has just been a period of little or no useful debate, of little or no relevant figures either way, and two opposing camps using fear and innuendo. At the end of that period, on Thursday 23 June, the UK seemingly voted to leave the European Union.

Women part-timers lose out on pensions

As many as three million part-time women workers are excluded from workplace pensions, a TUC reports finds.

Lack of support for disabled teachers

More than half (52%) of disabled teachers have been discriminated against, isolated or excluded at work because of their disability, a conference organised by the NASUWT teaching union, has heard.

Small narrowing in UK current account deficit

Concerns about Britain’s trading position with the rest of the world will continue if the latest quarterly figures are anything to go by.

Remuneration package of 32 averages £2.15m

Thirty-two executives whose remuneration package was each worth over £1 million last year shared a total of £68.69 million — that’s an average package of £2.15 million each.

Volume 78, Issue 25, 23 June  2016

Adverse impact of tribunal fees

A House of Commons Justice Committee report into court and tribunal fees says major changes are urgently needed to restore an acceptable level of access to the employment tribunals system.

'Reckless' to scrap NHS bursaries

Plans to scrap bursaries for student nurses and other NHS staff in England are reckless, unions and charities say.

Missing out on pensions and benefits

The government is to write to more than 100,000 people who are set to miss out on the new state pension owing to a lack of contributions.

Call for 14-day self-certification period

Workers should be able to self-certify sickness for up to two weeks to help reduce the number of unnecessary GP appointments, doctors say.

Fathers missing out on paternity pay

One in five new fathers didn’t qualify for paternity pay, a TUC analysis finds.

Volume 78, Issue 24, 16 June  2016

Average earnings fillip on back of living wage

Growth in average weekly earnings received a boost from the introduction of National Living Wage (NLW) in April for workers aged 25 and over.

Retail price inflation rises in May

The inflation measure used by union negotiators posted an increase in May, while that used by the government was unchanged.

UK unemployment rate at 11-year low

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 20,000 to 1.67 million in the three months to April.

Modern slavery judgment against firm

In a landmark high court judgment, a UK company has been found liable for the first time for victims of modern slavery.

Employers don't have working carers' policy

Employers are being urged to put processes in place to assist working carers. National charity Carers UK states that three in five people will, at some point in their lives, have to care for a friend or family member.

Volume 78, Issue 23, 9 June  2016

Dementia in workplace

The Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) is to work with Age Scotland to raise awareness of dementia in the workplace.

Thirty execs rake in £70 million

Thirty top executives whose annual remuneration package is over £1 million feature in the table.

Deaths after Johnson's fire service cuts

London residents have died as a result of fire station closures imposed by Boris Johnson in his time as mayor.

Value of inward M&A hits seven-year high

Merge and acquisition (M&A) activity involving UK companies remains at low levels, official figures show. However, the quarterly value of activity in two sectors is the highest since the downturn in 2009.

UK factory output 'recovers'

Manufacturing output staged a recovery in the latest three months, official figures show.

Climbdown on police spying on unions

Unions have welcomed a government climbdown on the Investigatory Powers Bill, in response to a Labour Party amendment. A Tory minister conceded changes that will protect unions from police warrants to seize phone records or emails.

Volume 78, Issue 22, 2 June  2016

Rise in numbers working from home

There has been a marked increase in the number of employees who say they usually work for home, a TUC analysis shows.

Economic growth confirmed for start of year

The Office for National Statistics has confirmed that economic growth in the first quarter of the year was 0.4%.

Remuneration for two totals over £55 million

Hansteen may not be a household name, but two directors of the property investment group had a very successful 2015 on the remuneration front.

Euro 2016 advice

The employment relations service Acas has urged employers to be flexible with staffing during the Euro 2016 football tournament, which begins on 10 June.

Planes, trains and drones and lasers

The government and the CAA aviation regulator have been urged to protect the public with comprehensive regulation of drones.

Equal pay progress at Scottish council

A breakthrough has been achieved by the GMB general union with North Lanarkshire Council over equal pay.

Volume 78, Issue 21, 26 May  2016

Gross pay packages for top executives

Sir Martin Sorrell has again had to defend his bumper pay package, saying shareholders had previously approved the incentive plans at advertising and PR company WPP by a substantial margin. Sorrell’s remuneration package grew to £70,416,000 in 2015.

Presenteeism — sick and at work

Going into work while ill may not be such a bad thing after all, suggests a report by the Institute  for Employment Studies (IES)

Trade union membership 2015

Union membership grew slightly last year, but union density fell again, the latest official figures show.

UK behind Scandinavia on gender equality

The UK rates as middle ranking on gender equality in the workplace, according to a survey from Glassdoor Economic Research.

UCATT votes for merger with Unite

Delegates at the annual conference of construction union UCATT have voted in favour of a merger with or a transfer of engagements to the Unite general union.

Missing data

Too many FTSE 1000 companies are failing to report on issues such as health and safety incidents, data breaches and employee turnover in their annual reports, according to research by the Valuing Your Talent Partnership.

Volume 78, Issue 20, 19 May  2016

Unemployment falls

UK unemployment has fallen on both main counts, official figures show.

Anaemic growth in average earnings

Growth in average weekly earnings, despite a rise, remained weak in March.

Check-off victory

The removal of the check-off method of collecting union subscriptions in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has been ruled unlawful after a High Court challenge by the PCS civil service union.

Inflation down again

In April, the main inflation measures were back down to the rates posted for the first two months of the year, the latest Office for National Statistics figures show.

Old and in poverty

Nearly one million people over the age of 75 are living in poverty in Britain, a charity has warned.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 19, 12 May  2016

Shareholders unhappy over executive pay

Forty executives feature in the latest tranche of £1 million plus remuneration packages at top Stock Exchange-quoted companies.

Compensation for blacklisted workers

The Unite general union has become the third union to reach a settlement over the blacklisting of workers in the UK construction industry.

MPs keep it in family

Family members employed by MPs are paid on average £5,600 more than other staff, a watchdog has revealed.

Non-compliance with minimum wage rules

There is no accurate overall measure of non-compliance with the National Minimum Wage (NMW) regulations and, as a result, it has been difficult to assess the effectiveness of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) enforcement activities over time. That’s the damning finding of a National Audit Office (NAO) report into employers’ compliance with minimum wage regulations.

Industry in recession

UK industry is in recession, the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show.

Lloyds to offer gender reassignment surgery

Lloyds Banking Group has become the first UK organisation to extend its staff healthcare plans to cover gender dysphoria, in a move that campaign groups say more employers should emulate.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 18, 5 May  2016

Trade Union Bill receives Royal Assent

The Trade Union Bill has become law after receiving Royal Assent. It follows an eight-month battle to block it in and outside Parliament.

Losers in move to Universal Credit  

Work and pensions secretary Stephen Crabb should restate and reclaim the role of Universal Credit in supporting more people into work and then boosting earnings, rather than being a source of savings for the Treasury to meet fiscal targets, a Resolution Foundation reports says.

Compensation win for blacklisted workers

Hundreds of workers who were blacklisted by large construction firms have won compensation following a long-running lawsuit.

Effects of shift work on women and their health

The adverse effects of shift work on women are highlighted in two recent studies.

Union wants end to confusion over tips

Plans to end unfair tipping practices and increase transparency for consumers and employees have been announced by the government.

School assistants struggle to cope

A crisis in health and well-being is engulfing schools, which could lead to a mass exodus of hardworking, dedicated staff unless urgent action is taken by the government, says the public sector union UNISON.

UK growth slows in early 2016

The initial estimate for economic growth at the start of 2016 shows a slowing down.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 17, 28 April  2016

Tata Steel package

The UK and Welsh governments are willing to take a 25% stake in any rescue of Tata Steel's UK operations, it has been announced.

Lloyds Bank offshores and axes jobs

It may be that António Horta-Osório, chief executive at Lloyds Banking Group, wants to increase his already large remuneration package of £8.54 million on the back of job cuts and the offshoring of jobs.

Water industry — the pay gulf

Even if they were on the voluntary Living Wage rate, it would take nearly 130 years for the lowest paid employees in the water industry to earn the same sum that the highest paid director in the sector earns in 12 months according to new research by the public service union UNISON.

Inflation and earnings forecasts for 2016

Inflation and average earnings growth are now expected to be lower than previously thought at the start of the year, according to the latest forecasts for the UK economy collated by the Treasury from around 40 City and academic forecasting institutions.

Apprenticeship matching scheme

Up to 10,000 young people every year could be helped to find a job in the automotive sector with the launch of an apprenticeship matching service.

Sickness absence change unlawful

Imposed changes to a Department for Transport(DfT) sickness absence policy were unlawful, an appeal court judge has confirmed.

Bulging pay packages for City executives

The banks may have brought the country to its knees in 2008, but City firms continue to reward its top people with huge remuneration packages.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 16, 21 April  2016

Rise in unemployment

UK unemployment has risen for the first time in almost a year, official figures show.

Guide to make pensions clearer

Trade body, the Association of British Insurers, is preparing a new guide to pensions language that could see the end of terms such as "uncrystallised pension funds lump sum" and "flexi-access drawdown" which have been used since the pension freedoms.

Growth in weekly earnings nosedives

Growth in average weekly earnings plummeted in February.

BAME workers more likely to be jobless

Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) workers with degrees are two and half times more likely to be unemployed than white graduates, according to new analysis published by the TUC.

Trade Union Bill — more concessions

The government has been forced to make further concessions in its vindictive Trade Union Bill.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 15, 14 April  2016

Young women and the gender pay gap

Young women with vocational qualifications earn 15% less than men with comparable qualifications, according to a TUC analysis

Top executives in £1m a year pay club

Forty-three executives of top companies were happy to receive a remuneration package of at least £1 million in their firm’s last financial year.

Directors' greed led to death of worker

Two company directors have been jailed over safety failings in Heaton Norris, Stockport.

Retail price inflation increases to 1.6%

After a stutter, the main inflation measures posted higher increases in March, Office for National Statistics figures show.

Lead In and Out campaigns chosen

The two lead campaign organisations in the EU referendum have been named by the watchdog, the Electoral Commission.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 14, 7 April  2016

Increase in number of high earners in banking

The number of high earners in EU banks increased significantly in 2014, according to a new report from the European Banking Authority (EBA).

Low take-up of Shared Parental Leave

A year on from the introduction of Shared Parental Leave, a report shows a low take-up by new fathers.

Blacklist victims get their day in court

Blacklisted workers will demand compensation in court this week from eight construction firms for loss of earnings over decades.

Year-end economic growth uprated

The latest Official for National Statistics estimate on the economy for the final quarter of 2015 shows it grew by more than previously thought

Old and unemployable?

Age stereotypes can strongly affect people’s choices about who to hire, new research from the University of Kent has shown.

Acas updates guide on sex discrimination

Over the past year, the Acas helpline has dealt with over 7,000 calls related to sex discrimination in the workplace. This has led to employment relations service updating its guide on sex discrimination at work.

New employers to pay voluntary Living Wage

More employers are embracing the voluntary Living Wage rather than the lower statutory National Living Wage of £7.20 an hour introduced by the government for workers aged 25 and over.

Above-inflation rise for minimum wage

Younger workers will see their national minimum wage rate rise from 1 October 2016. Workers aged 21 up to 25 will get a 3.7% increase from £6.70 an hour to £6.95 an hour.

UK trading deficit worsens in 2015

Britain’s trading position with the rest of the world deteriorated in 2015. The UK’s current account deficit was £96.2 billion, up from a deficit of £92.5 billion in 2014.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 13, 31 March 2016

National Living Wage and April legal changes

Each year, April generally heralds a raft of legal changes. This April sees the introduction of the National Living Wage, which is in effect a higher National Minimum Wage.

Firms sign women in finance charter

A number of City firms have signed up to a new charter that links executive pay to gender diversity

Critical reports on academy trust

Education secretary Nicky Morgan has insisted there will be no retreat on plans to convert every state school in England into an academy, enduring a frosty reception from teachers as she told them the education system was “in much better shape” than five years ago.

Fresh privatisation threat to Land Registry

The government likes to bury bad news by releasing it just before parliament breaks. It did so with Perry Beeches The Academy Trust (see previous story) and it did so just before the Easter recess with new plans to privatise the Land Registry.

Disabled people failed by government

The government is failing to protect disabled people from discrimination, according to a report arising from a nine-month investigation by a House of Lords select committee.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 12, 24 March 2016

Inflation stuck at 1.3%

In January, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — remained at 1.3%.

Working mothers-to-be face discrimination

Three out of four working mothers say they have experienced pregnancy and maternity discrimination, new research suggests.

Government complicit in gender pay gap

The lack of effective policy in many of the areas that contribute to the gender pay gap is highlighted in a report by a cross-party committee of MPs.

Stiffer sentences over dangerous dogs

Owners convicted of dangerous dogs offences will face harsher punishments under new guidelines announced by the Sentencing Council.

Defeats for Tories in Lords over unions

The government was defeated in three votes on the Trade Union Bill in the House of Lords on 16 March.

Care home owner faces equal pay claim

Female carers are taking their employer to the High Court over an equal pay claim.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 11, 17 March 2016

MPs reject Sunday shopping change

The government’s plans to expand Sunday trading hours in England and Wales have been dropped after they were rejected by MPs.

Unemployment cut by 28,000 in January

Unemployment has fallen, official figures show. The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 28,000 to 1.69 million in the three months to January.

Budget 2016 — the economic background

The economy will not grow as fast as expected in 2016 and the following few years, chancellor George Osborne was forced to admit in his Budget speech.

Changes to inflation's shopping basket

Coffee pods from the likes of Nespresso and cream liqueurs, such as Baileys, are in and nightclub entry fees are out.

Swings in earnings growth

Growth in average weekly earnings appears to be on a roller coaster ride at the moment.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 10,10 March 2016

Trade Union Bill moves closer to becoming law

The Conservative government’s pernicious Trade Union Bill is moving to its next stage in the House of Lords, with the report stage due to start on 16 March.

Factory output falls

Manufacturing output went into reverse between the end of last year and the beginning of 2016, latest official figures show.

Too many not putting enough into pension

Millions of people in the UK are not saving enough for retirement, according to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in its latest report on employers’ pension provision.

Mergers and takeovers

There was an increase in both the number and the value of domestic and cross border mergers and acquisitions (M&A) involving UK companies between 2014 and 2015, the latest official figures show.

Motherhood penalty on earnings

Women who become mothers before the age of 33 earn 15% less than similar women who haven’t had children, according to an analysis published by the TUC on International Women’s Day.

Pension disadvantage of different workers

Women have barely half the pension savings of men, according to a new report.

Pay in manufacturing — no change on 2% rise

The average settlement level across industry was 2% in the three months to January, according to the EEF’s latest Pay Bulletin — in line with the average throughout 2015. The monthly rise for January was slightly higher at 2.2%.

ooOoo

Volume 78, Issue 9, 3 March 2016

UNISON can continue fight against fees

The Supreme Court has granted the public service union UNISON permission to continue its legal challenge against employment tribunal fees.

Economy slows at end of last year

GDP growth for the final quarter of 2015 was unrevised at 0.5%, official figures show.

Lords say dilute union fund proposals

A watering down of the government’s interference in trade union matters has been recommended by a House of Lords select committee, but it has given the green light to the Tory proposal that union members should be required to opt in to not opt out of a union’s political fund.

National Living Wage — productivity and pay

The need to boost productivity in low-paying sectors and among small employers will be reinforced by the introduction of the new National Living Wage (NLW) for workers aged over 25 in April, though there are huge uncertainties over how businesses can achieve this. So suggests a new report on how employers expect to respond to the NLW, published by the Resolution Foundation and the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development.

Period policy

A Bristol company is planning to introduce a “period policy” to allow female staff to work flexibly around their menstrual cycles.


Volume 78, Issue 8, 25 February 2016

Rise in childcare costs

Working parents are offered a brief respite from steeply rising childcare costs, as the 2016 Childcare Survey from the family and Childcare Trust shows average prices rose by just above inflation throughout Britain.

Discriminatory advertising

Thousands of people could be at risk of being denied jobs and services each year due to unlawful, discriminatory adverts, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHCR) warns.

Commission ruling favours workers

Thousands of workers will now be able to claim commission previously denied them thanks to a successful ruling on a case brought by UNISON member Joe Lock.

Public school tie still dominates in top jobs

The UK’s top professions are still disproportionately populated by alumni of independent schools, according to the education charity the Sutton Trust, which has been tracking the educational backgrounds of Britain’s elites for over 10 years.

Trade Union Bill misinformation

The Trade Union Bill is currently in the committee stage in the House of Lords and some Lords on the Conservative benches are freely putting their biases into speech and print.

Threats to workers' rights from Brexit

The workers’ rights in the UK which are underpinned by EU rules — and which would therefore be at risk if the UK votes to leave the EU are highlighted in a TUC report.


Volume 78, Issue 7, 18 February 2016

Inflation moves upward

In January, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was up to 1.3% from 1.2% the previous month. The latest RPI rate is the highest for 13 months: the December 2014 rate was 1.6%.

Unemployment on downward curve

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 60,000 to 1.7 million in the three months to December.

Vice-chancellors of universities get 3%

The gap between university bosses and staff has continued to widen, a new analysis from the UCU university and college lecturers’ union shows.

Earnings growth going nowhere fast

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally just 1.5% in December — the same rise as for January 2015 and down from the 2.2% rise for November.


Volume 78, Issue 6, 11 February 2016

Minimum wage cheats named and shamed

More employers who have failed to pay their workers the National Minimum Wage have been named and shamed, by business minister Nick Boles. However, none have been prosecuted.

Restructuring and its effect on well-being

Restructuring in organisations has a mainly negative effect on the welfare of employees regardless of whether there are job losses, according to a new study involving the University of East Anglia (UEA).

Shopping free for all in England and Wales

The government is to hand local authorities the power to extend Sunday opening hours for shops.

Factory output flat at end of 2015

Manufacturing output was flatlining at the end of last year, latest official figures show.

Managers should take lead over well-being

With mental ill-health one of the biggest public health challenges facing society, there is an overwhelming business and moral case for employers to address this challenge.

Wake up and smell coffee over dyslexia

A woman with dyslexia has won a disability discrimination case against her employer Starbucks, after she was accused of falsifying documents.


Volume 78, Issue 5, 4 February 2016

Pay gap in black and white — TUC findings

The pay gap between black and white workers is at its widest at degree level, a TUC analysis shows.

Disgraceful delays over workers' deaths

Construction union UCATT has said that it is highly concerned about the delay in bringing charges following the worst fatal accident in the industry for many years.

Council job cuts

Over 25,000 jobs are under threat at 52 councils across Britain as Tory funding cuts hit home yet again.

Families worse off under Universal Credit

The introduction of Universal Credit will leave working families worse off on average, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has said.

UK economy grows, but annual rate slows

The UK economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), edged higher in the final quarter of the year, official preliminary estimates show.

Skill shortages lead to unfilled vacancies

A significant increase in the number of unfilled vacancies resulting from skills shortages is reported in the latest official skills survey for the UK.

Boost for Boots staff

Chemist chain Boots is increasing the starting rate of pay for customer assistant staff outside of London by 7%, and that of customer assistants in London by 3%.


Volume 78, Issue 4, 28 January 2016

Huge earnings loss over last seven years

Average pay in Britain is still worth £2,270 less in real terms than it was in 2008 — a shortfall of £44 a week, a new analysis by the TUC reveals.

Lords inflict defeat over political funds

The government could be forced to think again over plans to restrict trade union funding of political parties after a defeat in the Lords.

Union concern over migrant worker deaths

Construction union UCATT has called on the Health and Safety Executive to urgently review their reporting methods and for the industry to examine safety requirements, following new evidence on migrant worker deaths.

Huge bill for unions over Trade Union Bill

The red tape contained in the Tories’ Trade Union Bill will cost unions more than £37 million over the next six years.

Retailers wait on National Living wage

Almost three-quarters (70%) of retail chain respondents are undecided about their approach to implementing chancellor George Osborne’s National Living Wage, according to research by Willis Towers Watson.

Executive excess shows no sign of waning

Thirty two executives of top companies were happy to receive a remuneration package of at least £1 million in the firm’s last financial year.


Volume 78, Issue 3, 21 January 2016

Unemployment falls across the UK

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 99,000 to 1.68 million in the three months to November.

Some protection for zero-hours workers

New regulations that give zero-hours workers a remedy in the employment tribunal if they are victimised for breaching an exclusivity term in their contract came into effect on 11 January.

Weekly earnings growth still low

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 2.0% in November — up from the 1.9% rise for October.

Inflation at 12-month high

In December, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was up to 1.2% from 1.1% the previous month. The latest RPI rate is the highest since December 2014 when the rise was 1.6%.

Blacklisters to miss out on Scottish contracts

Companies that are or have been involved in blacklisting will be excluded from bidding for public contracts, under new regulations that were laid in the Scottish Parliament in December 2015.


Volume 78, Issue 2, 14 January 2016

Conservative threat to opposition funding

An expected £6 million fall in Labour’s annual income as a result of legal changes being proposed by the Conservatives will make it impossible for the party to maintain its current structure, staffing or offices, a confidential party document released to the Guardian reveals.

More companies join Living Wage crowd

Two more firms have recently announced that they have received Living Wage accreditation.

Hedge fund fat cats

Partners at the UK offices of the hedge fund Brevan Howard Asset Management LLP were paid an average of £3.3 million pounds in the financial year ending March 2015.

Bosses can snoop on workers' internet use

Employers can read workers’ private messages sent via chat software and webmail accounts during working hours, judges have ruled.

Whitehall spend on consultants rises

The Conservative government may be wielding the axe on civil service jobs, but central government spending on outside consultants and temporary staff is creeping back up, according to a new report by the public spending watchdog. Some consultants are on £1,000 a day

Asbestos company smeared campaigners

Secret industry documents have revealed that the world’s biggest asbestos factory ran a smear campaign in the 1980s against journalists and campaigners who were trying to expose the deadly consequences of breathing in asbestos dust.

Factory output remains weak at end of 2015

Factory output grew by 0.5% in the three-month period ending November compared with the previous three-month period, according to the Office for National Statistics.


Volume 78, Issue 1, 7 January 2016

Low wage growth expected in 2016

Wage growth will remain at around 2% for most or all of 2016, according to the professional body, the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD).

Wealth divide grows ever wider


Britain’s richest households have pulled further ahead of the rest of the population as house prices have accelerated, with the top 10% now owning almost half of the country’s £11.1 trillion total private wealth, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Workplace trends in the coming year


The employment relations service Acas has produced a special report which examines the key workplace trends in 2016 to help employers plan for the year ahead and look at how the issues of the day might affect them and their employees

Fat Cat Tuesday

By the end of the first Tuesday of 2016, Britain’s top bosses had made more money in 2016 than the average UK worker earns in an entire year, according to the High Pay Centre’s calculations.

Britain's rail fares the highest in Europe


The New Year saw rail fares increase and UK commuters now spend up to six times as much of their salary on rail fares as other European passengers. 

Manifesto for disability equality from TUC

It’s a shameful statistic, but nearly half of disabled people are not in work, official figures show. It’s timely then that a manifesto, published by the TUC, aims to promote equality for disabled people and challenge discrimination against them.

Farm workers keep protection of board

The Scottish Agricultural Wages Board (SAWB) will continue to protect the rights of low paid farm workers in Scotland, rural affairs secretary Richard Lochhead has announced.

Pay cuts at KPMG

Partners at KPMG — one of the “Big Four" accountancy firms — saw their average remuneration cut by 13% last year, according to the firm’s 2015 annual report.


Volume 77, Issue 50, 17 December 2015

UK unemployment rate at nine-year low

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 110,000 to 1.71 million in the three months to October.

Inflation on rise again

In November, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was up to 1.1% from 0.7% the previous month.

Weekly earnings growth back below 2%

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 1.9% in October — down from the revised figure of 2.1% for September — according to the Office for National Statistics.

Well-being and work

The TUC has published new guidance — Work and well-being — which sets out the importance of healthy workplaces and provides advice on how to handle specific issues, such as stress, smoking, and obesity.

Prentis re-elected

Dave Prentis has been re-elected as general secretary of the public sector union UNISON.

ooOoo

Volume 77, Issue 49, 10 December 2015

Pensions, poverty and incomes of the older

The UK has the third-lowest pensions in the developed world, according to an OECD report, Pensions at a glance.

Flood safety and guidance

Postal workers, member of the CWU communications union, are maintaining a service to the public in the run up to Christmas despite difficult and arduous conditions created by the floods in the North of England.

Factory output weak

Manufacturing output remains weak latest official figures show. Factory output grew by just 0.4% in the three-month period ending October compared with the previous three-month period. That was an improvement on the 0.4% contraction in the three months to September.

More guidance over transgender workers

Guidance for solicitors on good practice in working with transgender employees has been published by the Law Society

Disabled workers with invisible impairments

A good practice guide for workplace reps to help them support trade union members with invisible impairments has been published by the TUC

Mergers and takeovers at low level

Mergers and takeovers involving UK companies continued at much lower levels of activity than those seen before the 2008-09 economic downturn, official statistics reveal.

More women needed in science and technology

Taking practical steps to recruit and retain more women in science, technology, engineering and maths roles — or STEM for short — could help employers address skills shortages in STEM areas, the professionals union Prospect and professional body the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) have argued in new joint guidance.

Land Registry sell-off back on agenda

To union anger, the Conservative government has announced it is to “consult on options to move operations of the Land Registry to the private sector from 2017”.

Volume 77, Issue 48, 3 December 2015

Millions to be worse off

As many headlines concentrated on George Osborne’s climbdown over tax credit, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) pointed out that it changes nothing in the long run because the cuts would still feature in the new Universal Credit system, which is due to replace tax credits by 2018. And millions of families will be hit.

Work-related violence — get it down

The reporting of work-related violence is important on any day of the week and not just a shopping frenzy day like Black Friday when shopworkers have faced widespread abuse.

Growth in UK economy is confirmed

The economy grew by 0.5% in the third quarter of 2015 compared with the second quarter, the latest official estimate shows.

Transgender guidance

Sometimes a lack of awareness and understanding in relation to gender identity results in employers failing to support staff effectively; often they lack the knowledge and the confidence to do so.

Firms should have to reveal pay ratios

Companies should have to publish the pay gap between bosses and their workforces in the hope of shaming firms into curbing excessive pay and benefits for chief executives, the latest report from the think tank, the High Pay Centre, says.

Freeze in statutory payments next April

The government is proposing to freeze a vast swathe of statutory payments from April 2016.

Cuts threaten key public services

Severe spending cuts are already undermining public service quality, the TUC warns, and that if the chancellor doesn’t rethink his plans to cut spending further, public service outcomes are set to plummet.

Is leaveism the new presenteeism?

The phenomenon of “leaveism” seems to be widespread, particularly in the public sector, new research shows.

Action over utility pension closure

Trade unionists in the North West working for United Utilities are considering their next steps after rejecting the company’s plan to close its final salary pension scheme by next spring.

Volume 77, Issue 47, 26 November 2015

Chancellor climbs down on tax credit

Chancellor George Osborne announced a climb down over tax credit changes in his Spending Review and Autumn Statement.

Blocs carve up trade and services

The world is being carved up in favour of global capital in a series of trade agreements, which will do nothing for workers' rights.

More money saved into workplace pensions

There has been an increase in the amount saved into workplace pensions, according to a report from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

Pay in manufacturing

Factory workers have made up some lost ground against inflation in their pay this year, official figures show. However, they lost ground to other sectors of the economy

Volume 77, Issue 46, 19 November 2015

Depressing effects of fit-for-work scheme

Hundreds of suicides and thousands of prescriptions for anti-depressants are directly linked to the government’s Work Capability Assessment, a study by Oxford and Liverpool universities has revealed

Retail price inflation down again

In October, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was down to 0.7% from 0.8% the previous month.

Annual survey of hours and earnings 2015

Adjusted for inflation, full-time average weekly earnings increased, while the gender pay gap closed by a narrow margin in April 2015, according to official figures.

Roache is new GMB general secretary

Tim Roache, regional secretary for Yorkshire and North Derbyshire region, has been elected to succeed Paul Kenny as general secretary and treasurer of the GMB general union.

Poorest hit hardest by tax credit cuts

A TUC analysis shows that more than nine in 10 (91%) working tax credit households in the UK will be worse off as a result of the government’s cuts, and sets out the average loss in each part of the UK.

Low pay in April 2015

Well over 200,000 jobs were paying less than the statutory minimum wage in April 2015, official figures show.

Councils pay Living Wage but £10 is aim

The GMB general union has published the names of 175 local authority employers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland paying and nine councils committed to pay a Living Wage.

Volume 77, Issue 45, 12 November 2015

UK unemployment down again

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count fell by 103,000 to 1.75 million in the three months to September. The unemployment rate was down to 5.3%, the lowest jobless rate since the second quarter of 2008, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Average earnings growth punctured

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 2.0% in September — down from the revised figure of 3.2% for August — according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Life's not fair

Life on many fronts has got worse particular young people and poor white boys, according to the Equality and Human Rights commission (EHRC).

Reasons behind presenteeism

High job demands, stress and job insecurity are among the main reasons why people go to work when they are ill, according to new research by an academic at the University of East Anglia.

Sunday trading extension on hold

Plans to extend Sunday trading in England and Wales have been put on hold by the government in the face of a defeat in the House of Commons.

New earnings data

The Office for National Statistics has introduced a new table in their Labour Market Statistics press release on Average Weekly Earnings — real and nominal — for the whole economy, covering total pay, including bonuses, and regular pay.

Volume 77, Issue 44, 5 November 2015

New Living Wage rates — but 6m on less

The Living Wage (LW) outside of London, as promoted by the Living Wage Foundation campaign, is to be increased by 5.1% or 40p an hour to £8.25 an hour from 2 November

Say No to TiSA

The GMB general union has called on the EU to oppose the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) which transfers sovereignty over labour market regulations from elected parliaments to multinationals.

No wage worries for top executives ...

The 33 top executives [listed in the bulletin] laugh in the face of the Living Wage, as they earned at least £1 million a year.

Safety worries over scab agency workers

Using agency workers as strike breakers has repercussions for health and safety, the TUC says.

Bidding for public contracts in Scotland

New statutory guidance for public sector procurement to promote fair work has been produced by the Scottish government.

Volume 77, Issue 43, 29 October 2015

Thirty two executives receive over £112m

The remuneration packages given to 32 executives at 10 companies quoted on the FTSE 350 index feature in the table on page 170. The total remuneration for this group of 32 came to £112.8 million.

Time off work when children are sick

Illness accounted for almost two-thirds (64.2%) of the 19.8 million days missed by school-age children in the autumn term last year, but many parents are unsure how to balance their working commitments with looking after their children when they are ill, says the TUC.

UK economy slows

The UK economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), slowed in the third quarter of the year, preliminary estimates show.

Health and safety statistics 2014-15

One hundred and forty two people were killed at work, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has confirmed in its annual report on health and safety statistics for 2014-15.

Government's plans over gender pay gap

New measures to eradicate gender inequality in the work place and remove barriers to women’s success have been announced by prime minister David Cameron.

County council to pay Living Wage

Northumberland County Council has introduced the Living Wage for its staff across the county.

Volume 77, Issue 42, 22 October 2015

£1m a year executives 10 a penny

Another tranche of top executives whose remuneration package last year was at least £1 million feature in the table.

Factory output weak

Factory output contracted by 0.9% in the three-month period ending August compared with the previous three-month period. That is worse than the 0.4% decrease for the three months ending July.

Blacklisters admit guilt

Blacklisted construction workers are on the verge of securing damages, which could total tens of millions, after unions won an unprecedented admission of guilt from construction companies involved in blacklisting.

Too many earning below Living Wage

Nearly one in four jobs outside of London pay less than the Living Wage — the pay level suggested for an adequate standard of living.

Asbestos — MPs call for eradication law

The time has come to put in place regulations requiring the safe, phased and planned removal of all the asbestos that still remains in place across Britain, a cross-party group of MPs says.

Grandparents to share parental leave

Shared Parental Leave and pay will be extended to working grandparents, chancellor George Osborne has announced.

Volume 77, Issue 41, 15 October 2015

RPI inflation down, CPI negative

Both of the main inflation indicators were down last month, with the consumer price inflation moving into negative territory.

Gay couple lose court fight over pension

A gay man has lost a legal bid for his husband to be recognised with the same pension rights as a wife would have in a heterosexual relationship.

Unemployment down

The number of unemployed people under the Labour Force Survey count decreased by 79,000 to 1.77 million in the three months to August. The unemployment rate was cut to 5.4%, the lowest jobless rate since the second quarter of 2008, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Average earnings growth again over 3%

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 3.1% in August down from the revised figure of 3.6% for July, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Facebook's 'tax bill'

Social network giant Facebook paid just £4,327 in corporation tax in 2014, its latest UK results show.

Volume 77, Issue 40, 8 October 2015

Councils against Trade Union Bill

Employers delivering public services across the country are joining unions in condemning the Conservative government’s Trade Union Bill, the UNISON website reports.

UK's current account deficit narrows

The UK’s current account deficit was £16.8 billion in the April to June 2015 quarter, down from a revised deficit of £24.0 billion in the January to March 2015 quarter. The narrowing of the current account deficit was mainly due to a narrowing in the deficit on the trade account.

How to report on gender pay gap

An insight into public attitudes towards the gender pay gap and transparent reporting has been revealed in a new report.

Will low-paid workers be better off?

The 20p an hour rise in the National Minimum Wage from 1 October was given a guarded welcome by the unions, as any gains made now and with chancellor Osborne’s National Living Wage of £7.20 an hour next April will be hit by cuts to tax credits.

Support staff with cancer, says TUC

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the TUC has issued guidance for union reps, employees, line managers and employers for how best to support colleagues with cancer at work.

Pay in the boardroom

Thirty four top executive who received a total remuneration package of at least £1 million feature in this week’s table of executive excess.

Volume 77, Issue 39, 1 October 2015

No financial fears in retirement for fat cats

Company executives continue to enjoy substantial retirement benefits, says the TUC in its latest annualPensionsWatch survey.

Parental leave at top ranked employers

The annual list of the top 30 employers for working families has been revealed by the Working Families website during National Working Life Week.

No jail for corporate manslaughter

A building firm and two executives have escaped lightly over the death of a building worker.

Factors in measuring gender pay gap

The gender pay gap stands at 19.1% in the UK in terms of median pay rates for all employees (full-time and part-time), higher than the EU 2014 average of 16.4%.

Employment law changes from October

There are only a few changes to employment law that come into effect on 1 October or sometime during the month.

Supermarket to pay above Living Wage

Supermarket chain Morrisons is the latest retailer to announce a tidy pay rise, following on from the likes of rival Sainsbury’s and IKEA.

Economy expands

The UK economy grew in the second quarter of the year, official figures show.

Volume 77, Issue 38, 24 Septembert 2015

Proposals to improve employment tribunals

The Law Society has published proposals to improve the employment tribunal structure — for employees, employers, and the administration of justice

Supermarket Lidl to pay Living Wage

Supermarket Lidl has said it will become the first UK supermarket to implement the Living Wage asrecommended by the Living Wage Foundation.

Cap on public sector redundancy pay-offs

 The cap on redundancy pay for public-sectorworkers will be set at £95,000, the government has confirmed.

Forecasts for the economy

The economy is expected to grow by 2.6% this year, according to Forecasts for the UK economy, a monthly comparison of independent forecasts collated by the Treasury.

Tribunal numbers dive

The number of employment tribunals has plummeted over the past three years.

Price of a life — the price of car?

Car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover has been sentenced for safety breaches discovered duringan investigation into a death of a worker at its Merseyside plant. Its fine was pitiful.

Who misses out on auto-enrolment

 Women are less likely to meet the qualifying criteriafor automatic enrolment into a pension, new research finds.

Presenteeism rife

Pressure to go to work when sick — presenteeism — is a major issue for organisations. More than one in eight (13%) workers would have to be hospitalised and have no other choice before calling in sick, according to Canada Life Group Insurance.

Volume 77, Issue 37, 17 Septembert 2015

Widening opposition to Trade Union Bill

As the Tories’ Trade Union Bill had its second reading in parliament, opposition to it is growing.

Jobless total up again

Unemployment under the Labour Force Survey count edged higher by 10,000 to 1.82 million in the three months to July. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.5%.

Rebound in average earnings growth

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 3.7% in July against the revised figure of 2.3% for June, according to the Office for National Statistics.

RPI inflation edges higher, CPI at 0%

In August, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was up to 1.1% from 1.0% for each of the previous three months.

Volume 77, Issue 36, 10 Septembert 2015

Fat cats in banking

The City of London dominates new figures on pay in banking released by the European regulator.

Number of zero-hours contracts rises

The number of people on zero-hours contracts has increased to almost three-quarters of a million over the past year, official figures show.

Trade Union Bill comes under attack

Leading human rights groups have warned that the Trade Union Bill is “a major attack on civil liberties in the UK”.

Factory output weakening

Factory output contracted by 0.8% in the three month period ending July compared with the previous three-month period; the June decrease was 0.3%.

You never see a poor bookie — or fat cat

The old adage of "you never see a poor bookie" is writ large this week in the list of 30 top executives whose remuneration package was £1 million or more last year.

Volume 77, Issue 35, 3 Septembert 2015

UK plc owned by rest of the world

The present government’s desire to follow in Margaret Thatcher's footsteps with a sell-off of the family silver” — the nationalised industries — to create a shareholding democracy won't work. In fact, UK plc is majority-owned by the “rest of the world”.

Fight goes on for abolition of fees

The long-running legal process over the public services union UNISON’s fight for the abolition of tribunal fees continues after the Court of Appeal rejected the union’s case for a judicial review.

Steady growth in 2015

The UK economy is growing, but only steadily, the latest official estimates show.

Gender pay flip-flop

Women earn more than men in their 20s, but then gender pay gap flip flops back in favour of men, a new analysis finds.

Capability assessments 'not fit for purpose'

Nearly 90 people a month are dying after being declared fit for work, according to new data that has prompted unions and campaigners to call for an overhaul of the government’s welfare regime.

Check out the tasty executive pay deals

There is retail and restaurant flavour to the latest list of executives whose remuneration packages amounted to over £1 million last year.

Volume 77, Issue 34, 27 August 2015

Union proposals — 'not fit for purpose'

An independent body appointed by the government which verifies the costs and savings of proposed changes to businesses and civil society has slammed the government’s impact assessments on trade union proposals as “red — not fit for purpose”.

Long-hours culture brings risk of stroke

Working 55 hours or more a week is linked to a 33% greater risk of stroke and a more modest (13%) increased risk of developing coronary heart disease compared with working a standard 35 to 40 hour week, according to the largest study in this field so far, led by UCL and published in The Lancet.

Moves to increase apprenticeships

The government has outlined a package of plans to increase the number of quality apprenticeships across England.

When is a pay rise not a pay rise?

There seems to be some confusion at the Treasuryover public sector pay rises.

Executive excess

The gender pay divide shows up in the latest tranche of 30 top executives.

Volume 77, Issue 33, 20 August 2015

The widening pay gap

Executive pay has continued to climb at the expense of ordinary workers, says the High Pay Centre.

Inflation stays at 1%

In July, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was 1.0%, the same rise as for the previous two months.

Rise in regulated rail fares outstrips wages

Rail fares for season tickets and other regulated fares have risen nearly three times faster than wages over the last five years, according to a new analysis by the TUC and the rail unions’ Action for Rail campaign.

High cost of bogus self-employment laid bare

Bogus self-employment comes with a cost to the worker and the public purse. As many as 460,000 people could be “bogusly self-employed” meaning workers miss out on holiday pay, the government loses tax revenue and responsible businesses could be undercut, says Citizens Advice.

More firms commit to paying Living Wage

Two more firms have committed to pay the Living Wage in London or elsewhere.

Volume 77, Issue 32, 13 August 2015

Challenge of finding holiday childcare

Families are set to face a challenging summer attempting to find childcare as the number of available places across the country drops significantly.

Jobless total rises for second month in a row

Unemployment rose the second consecutive month, the latest official figures show

Average earnings growth down again

Earnings growth was down for a third month in a row, official figures show.

Pay rises to average 2% in coming year

Employers are expecting to hand out average pay rises of 2% in the coming year. Interest rates on hold but rise on horizon

The Bank of England has announced that interest rates will remain on hold at 0.5%.

UK interest rates have remained unchanged since March 2009. However, there were indications from Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England, of a hike in the rate in 2016.

Volume 77, Issue 31, 6 August 2015

Millionaire company executives rake it in

Twenty five top executives whose total remuneration package was £1 million or more last year feature in the table.

Attack on check-off

In another vindictive attack on unions, the Conservative government has announced its intention to abolish the practice of check-off across all public sector organisations. But it could backfire on them by making unions stronger.

An appetite for the Living Wage

Food producer for the health and social care sector, Apetito UK, has committed to ensuring that all of its 1,100 employees receive the Living Wage or higher from early 2016

Presenteeism — not quite an epidemic

Almost half of UK workers (48%) went to work over the last year despite being ill, according to recent research

Night working grows since recession

Night working has grown since the recession, and there are now over three million employees who are regular night workers in the UK, a TUC report says.

Factory output shrinks

Factory output contracted by 0.3% in the second quarter of 2015 compared with the first.

Three equality guides from Acas

Three new guides on equality have been published by the employment relations service Acas.

Volume 77, Issue 30, 30 July 2015

Too much cash directed to shareholders

The Bank of England’s chief economist has said that business investment has been lower than was “desirable” for years and shareholder power was leading to slower growth,

Economy perks up

The economy, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), is estimated to have increased by 0.7% in the April-June quarter of 2015 compared with 0.4% growth in the first quarter.

Discrimination as mothers lose jobs

Thousands of new mothers are forced to leave their jobs due to discrimination, new research shows.

Union reforms could harm productivity

Restricting facility time for union representatives in the public sector would be counterproductive and may damage levels of trust between employers and employees and ultimately lower labour productivity, according to new research.

Union political funds

The number of members contributing to their union’s political fund has increased, according to the latest annual report of the union watchdog, the Certification Officer.

Fit note fails to deliver

The number of members contributing to their union’s political fund has increased, according to the latest annual report of the union watchdog, the Certification Officer.

Labour disputes in 2014

The number of working days lost to industrial action increased by over three-quarters to over three-quarters of a million, official figures show.

Volume 77, Issue 29, 23 July 2015

Top pay and decline of union influence

The decline in union influence has helped bosses’ pay balloon.

IKEA now a Living Wage employer

Ikea, the Swedish-owned multinational, has become the first major retailer in the UK to commit to becoming a Living Wage accredited employer.

New ideas needed on older workers

Existing employment policies are failing to address the biggest challenges facing older workers, according to a new study.

Review heralds end to pay progression

There will be a four-month wait before the full pain is revealed, but chancellor George Osborne has ordered government departments to find an additional £20 billion worth of cuts over the next five years.

Council targets rep over privatisation

Conservative-controlled Bromley council is ratcheting up the pressure on opponents of its privatisation programme by suspending a union rep in a bid to silence critics of its privatisation programme, the Unite general union has claimed.

Volume 77, Issue 28, 16 July 2015

Retail inflation sticks at 1% in June

In June, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — stood at 1.0%, the same rise as for the previous month

'Unnecessary attack' on workers' rights

Conservative claws have at last been revealed in the publication of the Trade Union Bill. There are no surprises in the attacks on unions and the Labour Party’s finances.

Rise in unemployment

There are worries that the unemployment bubble may have burst as both main counts showed a rise in the latest official figures.

Average earnings dips

The rise in average weekly earnings for the whole economy was provisionally 2.6% in May against the revised rise of 2.7% in April, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Volume 77, Issue 27, 9 July 2015

New contract or old con trick?

Chancellor George Osborne has delivered his seventh Budget, the first for a majority Conservative government since November 1996. He said his Budget offered the country a “new contract”, but the unions called it a “con trick”.

Balance of payments shows improvement

Britain’s trading position with the rest of the world improved slightly in the first quarter of the year, official figures show.

Tories fail on child poverty so redefine it

Recent child poverty statistics showed that 2.3 million children are still living in relative poverty and half a million more are living in absolute poverty than in 2010.

Go-ahead but delay for tax-free childcare

The government’s tax-free childcare scheme has been given the go-ahead, following a Supreme Court judgment. However, the scheme which was due to introduced this autumn and then next year will now be delayed until 2017.

UK economy in better shape in 2015

The economy grew more than previously thought in the first quarter of the year.

Manufacturing output flattens out

There was no increase in manufacturing output in the most recent three months, official figures show.

Regional inequalities increase under Tories

London is outperforming other parts of the UK in economic and jobs growth, while the economic recovery is weakest in the North West and Northern Ireland, a TUC study shows.

Volume 77, Issue 26, 2 July 2015

Families struggle to close income gap

The gap between the income of many families and the cost of a decent standard of living is still much wider than before the recession, the poverty campaign group, the Joseph Rowntree Foundations (JRF), says in its 2015 report on the Minimum Income Standard.

Midwives join TUC

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has formally become an affiliate to the TUC. It is the first Royal College to be a member of the TUC.

Time off for antenatal appointments

Pregnant employees are entitled to reasonable time off with pay for antenatal care made on the advice of a registered medical practitioner, says guidance from the employment relations service Acas.

Health and safety for children

A series of occupational safety and health education toolkits for teachers, aimed at introducing health and safety topics to primary school children are now available.

Healthy workplaces

Promoting a culture that improves the health and wellbeing of employees is good management and leads to healthy and productive workplaces, says the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

Thumbs up for pensions but ...

Workplace pension schemes are now seen as the safest way to save for retirement, according to the latest research from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Financial pain of Child Benefit freeze

The government’s decision to freeze Child Benefit until 2018 will cost households who claim the benefit more than £2,000 by the next election — regardless of any further cuts still to be announced in the Budget — a TUC report reveals.

Relax dress codes at work in heatwave

With thermometers set to hit 30°C in the South East, and the mid to high 20°Cs in other parts of England and Wales, the TUC is calling on employers to temporarily relax workplace dress codes to help their staff work through the heatwave as comfortably as possible.

Volume 77, Issue 25, 25 June 2015

Pension deficit tops £12bn in 2014

The total deficit of the defined benefit schemes of the top 250 FTSE companies has grown by £5 billion in a year. The total deficit in these DB pension schemes at 31 December 2014 is estimated to be £12 billion, a deterioration of £5 billion from the figure 12 months earlier, according to JLT Employee Benefits.

CBI head calls for wage rises

In a discussion on the post-election labour market, John Cridland, director-general of the CBI employers’ body, suggested that. while the economic recovery has been rich in jobs. a rise in wages has been delayed.

Living Wage for contractor staff

Southampton Solent University has made a commitment that the university’s main contractors will pay the Living Wage, so as to ensure that nobody working on campus is paid below it.

Productivity puzzle — seven levers

UK productivity levels continue to lag behind our competitors and have led to much talk of the "productivity puzzle".

Public sector jobs lost and worse to come

Total UK public sector employment has fallen to its lowest level since the official figures began tobe collated in 1999.

Life at the top

29 executives earned a total of £65.41 million last year — an average remuneration package of £2.26 million.

Volume 77, Issue 24, 18 June 2015

Living Wage served up

The lowest-paid workers in school kitchens across the north London borough of Camden will be paid an extra £2.55 an hour, following a successful campaign led by the public service union UNISON.

Improvement in average earnings

Living standards for some will have seen an improvement as average earnings growth has recently outstripped the rise in retail inflation.

Inflation on the rise

Inflation rebounded last month. In May, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — stood at 1.0% against a rise of 0.9% the previous month, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Unemployment falls

Unemployment has continued to fall in the spring months, official figures show.

Review of tribunals announced

A slump in tribunal claims was revealed in Ministry of Justice figures as the government announced there would be a review of the impact of employment tribunal fees.

Volume 77, Issue 23, 11 June 2015

Living Wage milestone of 1,500 employers

The number of organisations that are accredited as Living Wage employers has reached a milestone.

Guide to time off for surrogate parents

The basic statutory rights that employers must provide to intended parents who are having a child through a surrogacy arrangement are explained in a useful new TUC booklet.

Rise in factory output — but still below peak

Manufacturing output and the overall output of production industries increased in the most recent three months, official figures show.

Unions reject blacklists firms' 'derisory' offer

Blacklisted workers have rejected a “derisory” compensation offer from panicked building bosses trying to keep a lid on the burgeoning scandal as it goes through the courts.

Facility time guide

As a part of its continuing efforts to help branches and regions fight facility time cuts — and cope following a cut — the public service union UNISON has published a revised guide to facility time, with substantial additions.

Toxic air claims made by cabin crew

Seventeen former and serving cabin crew are planning legal action against British airlines saying they have been poisoned by contaminated cabin air.

Little pay restraint shown by top execs

There has been little recognition in the boardroom of the need for pay restraint, unlike other areas of working life.

Volume 77, Issue 22, 4 June 2015

Low activity in 2015 mergers and takeovers

Merger and acquisitions (M&A) activity involving UK companies remains at an historically low level, official figures show.

'Union premium' on wages gets bigger

The gap between the hourly earnings of union members and non-union members — the union premium — widened in 2014, official figures show.

Economic growth estimate unchanged

The economy did grow in the first quarter of the year as estimated earlier, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

Blowing the whistle — but to who?

Prescribed persons and bodies to who (sic) individuals can make a protected disclosure have been listed in an official document.

Experts say cut time spent sitting in office

Office workers should be on their feet for up to four hours a day to curb the health risks of too much cumulative sitting time.

Volume 77, Issue 21, 28 May 2015

Persistent poverty in UK and Europe

Almost a third of the UK population experienced income poverty in at least one year between 2010 and 2013, official figures show.

'Union effect' in training

Workers who are union members are much more likely to receive job-related training compared to workers who don’t belong to a union, a new report reveals.

University lecturers hit by casualisation

More than two out five university and college lecturers on casual contracts, such as zero-hours contracts, have struggled to pay household bills.

Safety probes at schools

The health and safety watchdog has launched nearly 300 investigations at schools in the past three years, according to the Schools Week website.

Exclusivity banned in zero-hours contracts

The government has finally outlawed the use of exclusivity clauses in zero-hours contracts from 26 May. But unions are unimpressed.

Growth and divide in weekly earnings

The growth in weekly earnings in 2014 was the lowest reported for 17 years, according to an analysis from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

Volume 77, Issue 20, 21 May 2015

Retail price inflation stays under 1%

In April, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was unchanged at 0.9%, according to the Office for National Statistics. RPI inflation remains at its lowest rate since November 2009 when inflation was 0.3%.

Increasing pressure on older carers

Figures from the Carers UK and Age UK charities show the number of carers aged 85 and over in England has risen by a staggering 128% in 10 years to over 87,000.

Reform of executives' performance pay

There should be wide-ranging reforms to performance- related executive pay, a report from the High Pay Centre says.

Crown Estate to pay Living Wage

The Crown Estate has become the first national property business and landowner to achieve accreditation as a Living Wage employer.

Co-op Group to continue political support

The future of the Co-operative Group’s membership of the Co-operative Party has been secured after a vote at the group’s AGM in Manchester.

Tories won donations battle in election run-up

The Conservatives received around £140,000 more in donations than the Labour Party in the run-up to general election day.

Volume 77, Issue 19, 14 May 2015

Tories take power after general election

The 2015 general election saw the Conservative Party confound the opinion polls by winning power with an overall majority of 12 seats.

City bonuses boost earnings growth

Average weekly earnings growth picked up in March, but only as a result of City bonuses, official figures show.

Unemployment dips by 35,000 in first quarter

The fall in unemployment has continued in the early months of 2015, but at a slower rate than last month, the latest official figures show.

Factory output slows at beginning of 2015

Manufacturing output appears to be faltering in the early months of 2015, official figures suggest.

Tory Party resumes its attack on unions

The new business secretary Sajid Javid has promised “significant changes” to strike laws in the Queen’s Speech, which will take place later this month.

Volume 77, Issue 18, 7 May 2015

Economy slows in first quarter of year

Economic growth has slumped to its weakest level since the final quarter of 2012, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Blacklisted rep in tribunal victory

A union rep blacklisted after complaining about anti-Liverpool jibes on his manager’s Facebook page said he was proud to stand up for Scousers after winning a tribunal for unfair dismissal.

Top executives enjoy £1m a year packages

Forty top executives feature in the latest table of directorswho picked up at least £1 million last year

Women still face back-to-work barriers

Three-quarters of women felt workplaces were still too inflexible for them to return to after they had taken an extended career break, to have children for example, a study has found.

Unequal treatment to end at airport security

Workers in Scottish airport group HIAL’s security company AMSL have voted to accept a management offer to harmonise their terms and conditions over the next 20 months following a six-year battle for equality.

Union reps' meetings qualify as working time

Attending meetings at the workplace in the capacity of a union or health and safety rep is working time for the purposes of the Working Time Regulations, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) has ruled.

Volume 77, Issue 17, 30 April 2015

Handsome rewards in executive packages

There is no let-up in the largesse handed out to executives in UK’s top boardrooms.

Epilepsy in workplace

Help for union reps in supporting members with epilepsy is available in a new TUC guide.

Richard Desmond's UKIP donation

Media owner Richard Desmond has handed over a £1 million donation to the United Kingdom Independence Party’s election  fund, but can’t find the money to give his newspaper staff a pay rise.

Nationwide says 'pay up' on Living Wage

Organisations that can afford to pay the Living Wage should do so, according to research by Nationwide Building Society.

Union official to head taskforce in Scotland

Anne Douglas, national secretary at the union for professionals, Prospect, is to co-chair a new independent group tasked with promoting a fairer workplace, the Scottish government has announced.

New qualification right on adoption leave

The right to adoption leave is now a "day one right", so employees will not need to have a qualifying period of service.

Strike over Tata Steel's pension closure?

Industrial action by four unions is expected to take place on the eve of the general election — 6 May — over Tata Steel’s pension closure proposal.

Volume 77, Issue 16, 23 April 2015

Unemployment dips below 1.84 million

Under the Labour Force Survey (LFS) count, unemployment fell by 76,000 to 1.84 million in the three months period December to February compared with the previous three-month’s total of 1.91 millionbetween September to November.

Turbans in workplace

A new employment law that enables Sikhs to wear turbans in all workplaces has come into force.

CWU gets new gen sec

Dave Ward, the deputy general secretary (postal) will replace the incumbent, Billy Hayes, from the1 June for a five-year period.

Earnings data provide little relief

In February, earnings growth for the whole economy was provisionally just 1.3% against the revised 1.4% rise in January, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Black and Asians hit by casualisation of work

Over the past four years black and Asian workers have been disproportionately affected by the rise in casual work, according to a new report from the TUC.

Whistleblowing case — public interest ruling

A landmark ruling as to what constitutes public interest in whistleblowing cases has been given by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT).

2010 and now

Official figures show that in April 2010, the month before the last general election, average weekly earnings were £448 and by February 2015 had risen to £485 — a increase of 8.3%.

Volume 77, Issue 15, 16 April 2015

More union bashing from Tories if they win

The Conservative Party's election manifesto promises more attacks on trade union rights.

Inequalities among ethnic minority people

Low pay and employment inequalities among ethnic minority employees and the role of occupational choices is the focus of a new study from the anti-poverty campaigners, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

Factory output slows at start of 2015

Manufacturing output appears to be faltering in the early months of 2015, official figures suggest

Ambulance staff are stressed out

Long hours, staff shortages and the mental demands of the job are placing an enormous burden on ambulanceworkers, according to a new survey.

Inflation dips under 1%

Cheaper clothing contributed to be the slowdown in the rate of inflation, official figures show.

Pension changes

Individuals over the age of 55 now have access to their defined contribution (DC) pension savings in full.

Volume 77, Issue 14, 9 April 2015

Employment law changes in April

The ability to take shared parental leave is the main changes in employment law sphere coming into effect this April. Aside from an initial two weeks of maternity leave for the mother, up to 50 weeks of leave and 37 weeks of pay can be shared between parents.

Compensation scheme an 'unholy mess'

The UK government’s workplace compensation scheme covers only a tiny proportion of those made ill by their work and needs urgent reform, a new study has warned.

Tory claim on tax rubbished

The Conservative Party’s claim that under Labour there would be a tax rise for every working household has been slated by the respected think tank, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS).

Living Wage successes

Two recent successes in the south west on the Living Wage have been announced by the public services union UNISON.

Tory backers named and shamed

Two of the business leaders who signed a letter supporting the Conservative's economic strategy are from companies named and shamed by the coalition government for not paying one or more workers the National Minimum Wage (NMW

Balance of payments - record deficit

Britain’s trading position with the rest of the world continued breaking records for the wrong reasons in 2014, official figure show.

Executives in the £1m-a-year pay club

Thirty executives who received £1 million a year in total remuneration last year feature in the table.

Volume 77, Issue 13, 2 April 2015

Economic growth is revised upwards

The economy grew at a faster pace than initially estimated, revised official figures for 2014 show.

UNISON can appeal over tribunal fees

The public service union UNISON has been granted permission by the Court of Appeal to go ahead with appeals against the decisions of the High Court refusing its two Judicial Review applications challenging the lawfulness of employment tribunal fees.

Call for public inquiry into blacklisting

There should be a public inquiry into blacklisting, the House of Commons Scottish Affairs Committee says in its final report on the subject.

A promise to end zero-hours contracts

Staff on zero-hour contracts at Co-op Funeralcare are to be offered new contracts, with guaranteed hours and improved terms and conditions, following a ground-breaking agreement with the retail union Usdaw.

Industrial action at Windsor Castle

The royal family faces industrial action short of a strike by low paid staff in Windsor Castle as the PCS public and commercial services union opens a ballot over allowances.

Austerity has led to mental health issues

Workers have been experiencing a significant increase in stress, which in some cases has led to mental ill health, as a result of the impact of austerity on their work and home lives, a new report from the TUC says.

Volume 77, Issue 12, 26 March 2015

Millionaire says Living Wage 'irrelevant'

Lord Wolfson of Aspley Guise, the Conservative peer and chief executive of retail chain Next, has called the Living Wage “irrelevant” and an “invention” that will reduce employment opportunities.

Food and furniture prices cut inflation

Cheaper food and price movements in furniture and furnishings contributed to be the slowdown in the rate of inflation, official figures show.

Changes to inflation's shopping basket

The electronic cigarette is in and the satnav is out in the opinion of the Office for National Statistics

Downside to being an agency worker

An analysis by the employment relations service Acas of calls to its telephone helpline on the issues most affecting agency workers, to gauge the impact of the 2010 Agency Worker Regulations on this employment relationship is called Three sides to every story: the impact of the Agency Worker Regulations.

Wealth gap as wide in Scotland as GB

The wealthiest 10% of households in Scotland own nearly half the country’s wealth, according to a new report.

Blacklister stitched up

The Metropolitan Police don’t appear to like having their dirty secrets exposed, as they have arrested blacklist campaigner and author Dave Smith on trumped up charges of obstruction as he was taking part in a peaceful demonstration against Crossrail.

Take-home pay growth

Growth in take-home pay slowed in February, according to the payments processor VocaLInk.

Volume 77, Issue 11, 19 March 2015

Budget 2015 — the economic background

The economy grew by 2.6% in 2014, chancellor George Osborne said in his final Budget before the May election.

Unemployment down

Under the Labour Force Survey (LFS) count, unemployment fell by 102,000 to 1.86 million in the three-month period ending January from the previous three-month’s total of 1.96 million

Police infiltrated five trade unions

A former undercover policeman has revealed that his spying activities stretched to other unions outside the construction industry.

No joy in average weekly earnings data

Average weekly earnings growth appears to have started the year from a low point, given the predictions that workers’ living standards will improve during 2015.

Asbestos in schools

Some eight months late, the government’s review of the management of asbestos in schools has finally been published. The Asbestos in Schools (AiS) campaign said it was “a positive step forward” and makes a number of constructive proposals and concessions that the government had not previously made.

Volume 77, Issue 10, 12 March 2015

Gender pay gap across EU member states

The UK had the sixth widest gender pay gap across the 28 European Union (EU) member states in 2013.

Factory output up, but below pre-crisis peak

Manufacturing output increased at the start of 2014, but is still below its first quarter of 2008 peak, official figures show.

Poor mental health of 'blue light' staff

Nine in 10 emergency services staff and volunteers surveyed have experienced stress, low mood and poor mental health at some point while working for the emergency services, the mental health charity Mind has found.

Pay and expenses for top university job

Vice-chancellors of UK universities earn over £260,000 on average and are spending thousands on luxury flights and hotel accommodation, according to figures compiled by the university and college lecturers’ union UCU.

NHS members' links to private healthcare

Over a quarter of the governing members of the Tory designed NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), which have responsibility for a budget of £65 billion, have links to a private company involved in healthcare.

Mergers and takeovers at record low

In 2014, merger and acquisition activity involving UK companies fell to lower levels than experienced during the depth of the 2008-09 economic downturn and was at its lowest level since 1987, when ONS first published overall merger and acquisition data.

Jobs growth for women is in low-paid jobs

Around half of the net growth in female employment in 2014 came from women moving in to lower-paid part-time jobs, according to a TUC analysis.

Volume 77, Issue 9, 5 March 2015

UK growth confirmed

The UK economy grew by 0.5% in the fourth quarter of 2014, according to official figures.

Benefits migrant workers bring to UK

Migrant workers have brought various benefits to UK employers that have led to productivity boosts and company expansion, new research has found.

Waste of young people

The number of young people who were not in education, employment or training increased in the final quarter of 2014.

Zero-hours contracts

The latest estimate of the number of people whoare employed on zero-hours contracts in their main employment, from the Labour Force Survey (LFS), which is a survey of individuals in households, is 697,000 for October to December 2014, representing 2.3% of people in employment.

More public money needed for care sector

General low pay across the care sector and tight budget constraints facing care providers means that paying a Living Wage to all UK care workers cannot realistically be achieved without additional public funding, a new study from the Resolution Foundation think tank has found.

Executive pay levels and public trust

Business leaders from across the UK say excessive pay for those at the top is the biggest threat to the reputation of business, according to research from the High Pay Centre.

Outsourcing of public services hits quality

The outsourcing of public services provision to private contractors has a detrimental impact on the workforce and a knock-on effect on the quality of care provided.

Volume 77, Issue 8, 26 February 2015

Missing a Living Wage

Half the jobs in some parts of Britain are paying less than the Living Wage, the TUC said at the start of the second week of the TUC’s Fair Pay Fortnight.

Firefighter deaths

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has admitted health and safety breaches in connection with the death of an Edinburgh firefighter. Ewan Williamson died in July 2009 after becoming trapped while tackling a blaze in Scotland’s capital.

Party donations in 2014

Conservative Party headquarters received almost two and a half times the sum the Labour Party received at its HQ in 2014, according to a Fact Service analysis. Payments in kind and donations to constituency parties are not included in the analysis.

Low paid could get 3% rise in autumn 2015

The Low Pay Commission (LPC) has recommended a 3% increase in the National Minimum Wage.

Factory output slows at end of 2014

The slowdown in the growth in manufacturing output continued into December.

Volume 77, Issue 7, 19 February 2015

New limits from April

The limit for a week’s pay when calculating compensation for basic unfair dismissal will increase to £475 from 6 April.

Deficit worse because of wage stagnation

The lack of earnings growth means the coalition government is collecting £33.4 billion less in income tax and national insurance than official forecasts suggested.

End of year bonuses boost earnings data

Higher City bonuses distorted the average weekly earnings figures at the end of 2014.

Unemployment down below 1.9 million

Under the Labour Force Survey (LFS) count, unemployment fell by 97,000 to 1.86 million in the threemonth period ending December from the previous three-month’s total of 1.96 million.

Fuel and food behind lower inflation

Cheaper petrol and food continue to be the main contributors to the slowdown in the rate of inflation.

Volume 77, Issue 6, 12 February 2015

Fourteen directors on at least £20,000 a week

The huge growth in the remuneration packages of top executives shows no sign of abating.

Tax avoidance the PwC and HSBC way

One of the Big Four accountancy firms is promoting corporate tax avoidance on an “industrial scale”, and the tax industry needs more stringent government regulation, according to the House of Common's Public Accounts Committee.

Zero-hours workers want share of bonus

Top retailer Sports Direct is facing a claim for millions of pounds from nearly 300 workers who were excluded from the retailer’s bonus scheme because they were on zero-hour contracts.

Setback for shop staff over EU ruling

Retail union Usdaw has expressed its disappointment over a ruling in the European courts that represents a setback to shop workers fighting for compensation.

Volume 77, Issue 5, 5 February 2015

Psychological impact of austerity on staff

The coalition government’s austerity measures have led to a reduced commitment on the part of public sector workers towards their organisation, new research has found.

Care crisis over cuts and pay

The escalating cost of caring for the elderly means councils will have to divert £1.1 billion from services like fixing potholes and running libraries and museums from April, new analysis by the Local Government Association (LGA) shows.

Disabled jobseekers face barriers

More than a third of disabled jobseekers have been discriminated against during the recruitment process, according to research commissioned by the Recruitment Industry Disability Initiative (RIDI).

Fall in real pay

Female employees, older workers and low-paid staff have seen smaller real wage falls than male employees, younger workers and those on higher pay, according to research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS).

Economy slows

Growth in the UK economy slowed down at the end of last year, the first estimates show.

Shame of winter death toll from cold

The cold weather death toll this winter is expected to be the highest for 15 years.

Volume 77, Issue 4, 29 January 2015

Multi-lingual guide put online by TUC

Unscrupulous employers have been known to take advantage of the fact that migrant workers are often unaware of their employment rights. A new online guide to help combat this exploitation so that everyone is treated fairly has been launched by the TUC.

Unity ceramics union merges with GMB

The 4,000-strong ceramics union Unity has voted overwhelmingly to merge with the GMB general union. The members voted by 93% in favour of transferring engagements to the UK’s third largest union.

Flexibility in sickness absence policies

A Work Foundation report has called on the government to support measures to increase the flexibility of sickness absence policies, to allow employees with fluctuating health conditions to pre-emptively arrange part-time sick leave.

Economic outlook for 2015 rosier

The outlook for 2015 is looking slightly better now than it was in December 2014, according to the latest forecasts from City and independent forecasters collated by the Treasury.

Shop staff still face violence and threats

In the last twelve months on average 241 shop staff are assaulted every day, according to the retail and distribution workers’ union Usdaw.

Another year of executive excess

Twenty-five highly paid executives feature in Fact Service’s first pay table of 2015.

An earnings measure to include self-employed?

A call for an improved official earnings measure that captures all workers and not just employees has been made by the left-of centre think tank, the Resolution Foundation.

Volume 77, Issue 3, 22 January 2015

Free school meals

Schools across Scotland are now serving up free school meals to every Primary 1-3 pupil, following the Scottish government’s expanded free schools meals policy coming into effect on 5 January.

Unemployment down on both counts

Under the Labour Force Survey (LFS) count, unemployment fell by 58,000 to 1.91 million in the threemonth period September to November from the previous three-month’s total of 1.97 million.

Earnings growth fails to match inflation rise

In November, earnings growth for the whole economy was 1.8% down from the revised figure of 2.0% for October, according to the Office for National Statistics. However, the retail price inflation (RPI) rate in November was 2.0% so workers’ living standards continue to be hit.

How to cope with winter travel disruption

Travel disruption can affect an employee’s ability to get to work on time or in some cases at all, the employment relations service Acas says. For situations from public transport cancellations to severe weather, employers and employees should consider how this could impact on the workforce

Austerity uncovered

A growing funding crisis in local government is threatening the future of local public services in England, according to a new analysis by the Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES).

Volume 77, Issue 2, 15 January 2015

Stronger enforcement call on minimum wage

Enforcement of the National Minimum Wage must be continuously improved in order to combat those employers who are actively trying to find ways not to pay their workers properly ...

November sees slower rise in factory output

Factory output in the three months to November was up by 0.4% on the previous three-month period compared with a 0.5% increase in the three months to October.

Private firm cuts and runs from NHS hospital

Circle Holdings, which operates Hinchingbrooke Hospital in Cambridgeshire, said its franchise was “no longer viable under current terms”.

Retail price inflation at five-year low

In December, the annual rate of inflation — as measured by the Retail Prices Index (RPI) — was down to 1.6% from 2.0% the previous month ...

Tesco closes defined benefit scheme

Supermarket giant Tesco has confirmed plans to close its defined benefit (DB) pension scheme and to introduce a flexible benefits package for store workers to help the employer reduce annual costs of up to £250 million.

Abandon CPI and RPI inflation measures

The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) should be abandoned as the UK’s main measure of inflation, according to a new report. More importantly for trade union negotiators, the report recommends that the Retail Prices Index (RPI) should be abandoned as soon as possible.

Volume 77, Issue 1, 8 January 2015

Four out of five deterred by fees

People are being put off holding unfair employers to account by too-high fees and a lack of awareness about support, Citizens Advice has found

Limit to backdated holiday pay claims

The business-friendly coalition government has introduced legislation to reduce potential costs to employers following the recent court decision on holiday pay.

The year ahead

The economy is expected to pick up in 2015, according to the latest forecasts collated by the Treasury.

Fat cat Tuesday on second working day

By the end of Tuesday, 6 January, Britain’s top bosses had made more money in 2015 than the average UK worker earns in an entire year, according to calculations by the High Pay Centre think tank.

UK's trading position worsens in autumn

In the third quarter of 2014, Britain’s trading position with the rest of world deteriorated with the UK’s current account deficit widening to £27.0 billion from £24.3 billion in the second quarter.

Pension downside of umbrella companies

The explosion in the use of umbrella companies is undermining the implementation of the government’s auto-enrolment scheme, the construction workers’ union UCATT has warned.

UK rail commuters hit by January rise

Commuters on the UK’s privatised railways could be spending more than twice as much of their salary on rail travel as passengers on publicly-owned railways in France, Germany, Spain and Italy, rail campaigners have warned.

Volume 76, Issue 50, 18 December 2014

Unemployment down on both count

Under the Labour Force Survey (LFS) count, unemployment fell by 63,000 to 1.96 million in the three month period August to October from the previous period’s total of 2.02 million. However, the fall was the slowest for a year.

Earnings growth stays below inflation rate

Earnings growth staged a small recovery, but still lags behind inflation, latest official figures show.

Retail price inflation at five-year low

The retail inflation rate was at its lowest level for five years, official figures show.

Fit to work service

The government’s Fit for Work service was launched on 15 December with the advice aspect coming on stream. In England and Wales the service is being run by a private contractor Health Management, while the Fit Work Scotland service is run by the Scottish government.

New appeal over tribunal fees

The public service union UNISON has been granted permission to appeal the High Court’s decision to turn down the union’s second Judicial Review application over the government’s decision to introduce employment tribunal fees.

Volume 76, Issue 49, 11 December 2014

Osborne's cut to go much deeper

Spending cuts on a “colossal scale” are being made in a bid to get the public finances into balance by 2018-19, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has said.

Wages across the globe

Spending cuts on a “colossal scale” are being made in a bid to get the public finances into balance by 2018-19, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has said.

Young workers hit by casualisation

The increased use of zero-hours contracts and agency workers by employers is preventing young people from obtaining permanent jobs, according to the TUC.

Reasons for rise in use of food banks

An income squeeze, benefit delays and excessive utility bills are blamed by a cross-party group of MPs for a huge rise in the use of food banks.

Factory output higher

Latest official figures show manufacturing output expanded at the start of autumn.

Cut income inequality for economic growth

Reducing income inequality would boost economic growth, according to an OECD analysis. The think tank finds that countries where income inequality is decreasing grow faster than those with rising inequality.

Volume 76, Issue 48, 4 December 2014

Shared parental leave

The Shared Parental Leave Regulations 2014 came into force on 1 December 2014 and apply in respect of babies expected to be born on or after5 April 2015.

Business R&D in 2013

Annual business expenditure on research and development (R&D) in the UK showed a recovery in 2013 after the blip of a fall in 2012, according to official figures.

Autumn Statement — more austerity

The economy will grow more than expected at the time of the March Budget, but there is more austerity to come, according to chancellor George Osborne as he made his last Autumn Statement before the 2015 general election.

Mergers and takeovers involving UK firms

Mergers and takeover activity involving UK companies has remained at the low levels experienced since the 2008-09 recession, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.

Discrimination against new mothers still rife

Even though the law was changed 40 years ago to protect pregnant women from ill-treatment at work, the attitudes of many employers are still stuck in the 1970s — with the sacking, bullying and sidelining of expectant mothers commonplace, a TUC report alleges.

Union recognition in voluntary sector

Two unions — UNISON and Unite — have signed a recognition agreement with the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB).

Volume 76, Issue 47, 27 November 2014

Economy — steady as you go in Q3

There has been no change in the official estimate of how the economy fared in the third quarter of the year.

CPI inflation measure is 'flawed'

Plummeting wages under the Tory-led government have been even greater than reported due to major flaws in the government’s preferred method of calculating inflation, according to new research.

Growth through people

Urgent action must be taken to improve skill levels and how they are developed in order to boost productivity, wages and social mobility, according to a report from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, supported by the CBI and the TUC.

Annual survey of hours and earnings 2014

Full-time average weekly earnings fell in real terms but the gender pay gap narrowed in April 2014, according to official figures.

More working families living in poverty

Full-time average weekly earnings fell in real terms but the gender pay gap narrowed in April 2014, according to official figures.

Low pay in April 2014

There were almost a quarter of a million jobs paying less than the legal minimum wage in April 2014, official figures show.

Positive step at Grangemouth

An agreement has been reached between the Unite general union and the petrochemical company Ineos at its Grangemouth plant, allowing the union continued direct access to recruit new starters at the complex.

ooOoo

Volume 76, Issue 46, 20 November 2014

Unemployment falls on both main counts

Unemployment fell by 115,000, the latest official figures show.

Average earnings posts a small rise

Earnings growth staged a small recovery, the latest official figures show.

No change for retail price inflation

The retail inflation rate was unchanged over the past two months, official figures show.

Police cover-up over blacklist links?

Scotland Yard has been accused of seeking to cover up its involvement in the blacklisting of more than 3,200 construction workers following the emergence of minutes of a meeting between a senior officer in its anti-extremism unit and the organisation running the list.

Coalition MPs linked to privatised NHS

More than 70 MPs in the coalition government have links to private healthcare interests, according to the Unite general union.

ooOoo

Volume 76, Issue 45, 13 November 2014

Another downside to shift work

Working an irregular shift pattern may be causing long-term damage to people’s memory and mental abilities, new research has shown.

Victory on disclosure

Members of the Unite general union have won a victory over the disclosure of information for the purpose of collective bargaining to a recognised trade union.

Economic benefits of EU migrants

EU migrants pay in more to the UK than they take out, according to a new study.

Bereavement guidance

New guidance on managing bereavement at work has recently been published by the employment relations service Acas.

Umbrella con trick

Thousands of construction workers are seeing cuts in their pay as a result of being forced to operate via umbrella companies, according to a report from the construction workers’ union UCATT.

ooOoo

Volume 76, Issue 44, 6 November 2014

Volume 76, Issue 43, 30 October 2014

Volume 76, Issue 42, 23 October 2014

Volume 76, Issue 41, 16 October 2014

Volume 76, Issue 40, 9 October 2014

Volume 76, Issue 39, 2 October 2014

Volume 76, Issue 38, 25 September 2014

Volume 76, Issue 37, 18 September 2014

Volume 76, Issue 36, 11 September 2014

Volume 76, Issue 35, 4 September 2014

Volume 76, Issue 34, 28 August 2014

Volume 76, Issue 33, 21 August 2014

Volume 76, Issue 32, 14 August 2014

Volume 76, Issue 31, 7 August 2014

Volume 76, Issue 30, 31 July 2014

Volume 76, Issue 29, 24 July 2014

Volume 76, Issue 28, 17 July 2014

Volume 76, Issue 27, 10 July 2014

Volume 76, Issue 26, 3 July 2014

Volume 76, Issue 25, 26 June  20142014 2014 2014

Volume 76, Issue 24, 19 June 2014 

Volume 76, Issue 23, 12 June 2014

Volume 76, Issue 22, 5 June 2014

Volume 76, Issue 21, 29 May 2014

Volume 76, Issue 20, 22 May 2014

Volume 76, Issue 19, 15 May 2014

Volume 76, Issue 18, 8 May 2014

Volume 76, Issue 17, 1 May 2014 April 2014

Volume 76, Issue 16, 24 April 2014

Volume 76, Issue 15, 17 April 2014

Volume 76, Issue 13, 3 April 2014

Volume 76, Issue 12, 27 March 2014

Volume 76, Issue 11, 20 March 2014

Volume 76, Issue 10, 13 March 2014

Volume 76, Issue 9, 6 March 2014

Volume 76, Issue 8, 27 February 2014

Volume 76, Issue 7, 20 February 2014

Volume 76, Issue 6, 13 February 2014

Volume 76, Issue 5, 6 February 2014

Volume 76, Issue 4, 30 January 2014

Volume 76, Issue 3, 23 January 2014

Volume 76, Issue 2, 16 January 2014

Volume 76, Issue 1, 9 January 2014

Volume 75, Issue 50, 19 December 2013

Volume 75, Issue 49, 12 December 2013

Volume 75, Issue 48, 5 December 2013

Volume 75, Issue 47, 28 November 2013

Volume 75, Issue 46, 21 November 2013

Volume 75, Issue 45, 14 November 2013

Volume 75, Issue 44, 7 November 2013

Volume 75, Issue 43, 31 October 2013

Volume 75, Issue 42, 24 October 2013

Volume 75, Issue 41, 17 October 2013

Volume 75, Issue 40, 10 October 2013

Volume 75, Issue 39, 3 October 2013

Volume 75, Issue 38, 26 September 2013

Volume 75, Issue 37, 19 September 2013

Volume 75, Issue 36, 12 September 2013

Volume 75, Issue 35, 5 September 2013

Volume 75, Issue 34, 29 August 2013

Volume 75, Issue 33, 22 August 2013

Volume 75, Issue 32, 15 August 2013

Volume 75, Issue 31, 8 August 2013

Volume 75, Issue 30, 1 August 2013

Volume 75, Issue 29, 25 July 2013

Volume 75, Issue 28, 18 July 2013

Volume 75, Issue 27, 11 July 2013

Volume 75, Issue 26, 4 July 2013

Volume 75, Issue 25, 27 June 2013

Volume 75, Issue 24, 20 June 2013

Volume 75, Issue 23, 13 June 2013

Volume 75, Issue 22, 6 June 2013

Volume 75, Issue 21, 30 May 2013

Volume 75, Issue 20, 23 May 2013

Volume 75, Issue 19, 16 May 2013

Volume 75, Issue 18, 9 May 2013

Volume 75, Issue 17, 2 May 2013

Volume 75, Issue 16, 25 April 2013

Volume 75, Issue 15, 18 April 2013

Volume 75, Issue 13, 4 April 2013

Volume 75, Issue 12, 28 March 2013

Volume 75, Issue 11, 21 March 2013

Volume 75, Issue 10, 14 March 2013

Volume 75, Issue 9, 7 March 2013

Volume 75, Issue 8, 28 February 2013

Volume 75, Issue 7, 21 February 2013

Volume 75, Issue 6, 14 February 2013

Volume 75, Issue 5, 7 February 2013

Volume 75, Issue 4, 31 January 2013

Volume 75, Issue 3, 24 January 2013

Volume 75, Issue 2, 17 January 2013

Volume 75, Issue 1, 10 January 2013

Volume 74, Issue 49, 6 December 2012

Volume 74, Issue 48, 29 November 2012

Volume 74, Issue 47, 22 November 2012

Volume 74, Issue 46, 15 November 2012

Volume 74, Issue 45, 8 November 2012

Volume 74, Issue 44, 1 November 2012

Volume 74, Issue 43, 25 October 2012

Volume 74, Issue 42, 18 October 2012

Volume 74, Issue 41, 11 October 2012

Volume 74, Issue 40, 4 October 2012

Volume 74, Issue 39, 27 September 2012

Volume 74, Issue 38, 20 September 2012

Volume 74, Issue 37, 13 September 2012

Volume 74, Issue 36, 6 September 2012

Volume 74, Issue 35, 30 August 2012

Volume 74, Issue 34, 23 August 2012

Volume 74, Issue 33, 16 August 2012

Volume 74, Issue 32, 9 August 2012

Volume 74, Issue 31, 2 August 2012

Volume 74, Issue 30 , 26 July 2012

Volume 74, Issue 29 , 19 July 2012

Volume 74, Issue 27 , 5 July 2012

Volume 74, Issue 26 , 28 June 2012

Volume 74, Issue 25 , 21 June 2012

Volume 74, Issue 24 , 14 June 2012

Volume 74, Issue 23 , 7 June 2012

Volume 74, Issue 22 , 31 May 2012

Volume 74, Issue 21 , 24 May 2012

Volume 74, Issue 20 , 17 May 2012

Volume 74, Issue 19 , 10 May 2012

Volume 74, Issue 18 , 3 May 2012

Volume 74, Issue 17 , 26 April 2012

Volume 74, Issue 16 , 19 April 2012

Volume 74, Issue 15 , 12 April 2012

Volume 74, Issue 14 , 5 April 2012

Volume 74, Issue 13 , 29 March 2012

Volume 74, Issue 12 , 22 March 2012

Volume 74, Issue 11 , 15 March 2012

Volume 74, Issue 10 , 8 March 2012

Volume 74, Issue 9 , 1 March 2012

Volume 74, Issue 8 , 23 February 2012

Volume 74, Issue 7 , 16 February 2012

Volume 74, Issue 6 , 9 February 2012

Volume 74, Issue 5 , 2 February 2012

Volume 74, Issue 4, 26 January 2012

Volume 74, Issue 3, 19 January 2012

Volume 74, Issue 2, 12 January 2012

Volume 74, Issue 1, 5 January 2012

Volume 73, Issue 50, 15 December 2011

Volume 73, Issue 49, 8 December 2011

Volume 73, Issue 48, 1 December 2011

Pay settlements show little movement

Volume 73, Issue 47, 24 November 2011

Volume 73, Issue 46, 17 November 2011

Volume 73, Issue 45, 10 November 2011

Volume 73, Issue 44, 3 November 2011

Volume 73, Issue 43, 27 October 2011

Volume 73, Issue 42, 20 October 2011

Volume 73, Issue 41, 13 October 2011

Volume 73, Issue 40, 6 October 2011

Volume 73, Issue 39, 29 September 2011

Volume 73, Issue 38, 22 September 2011

Volume 73, Issue 37, 15 September 2011

Volume 73, Issue 36, 8 September 2011

Volume 73, Issue 35, 1 September 2011

Volume 73, Issue 34, 25 August 2011

Volume 73, Issue 33, 18 August 2011

Volume 73, Issue 32, 11 August 2011

Volume 73, Issue 31, 4 August 2011

Volume 73, Issue 30, 28 July 2011

Volume 73, Issue 29, 21 July 2011

Volume 73, Issue 28, 14 July 2011

Volume 73, Issue 27, 7 July 2011

Volume 73, Issue 26, 30 June 2011

Volume 73, Issue 25, 23 June 2011

Volume 73, Issue 24, 16 June 2011

Volume 73, Issue 23, 9 June 2011

Volume 73, Issue 22, 2 June 2011

Volume 77, Issue 47, 26 November 2015

 

New on Site

23/03/2017

Training

New courses for members and stewards.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/12

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


22/03/2017

Branch Committee

Papers for the meeting on Monday 3 April.


18/03/2017

Regional Disabled Members Group

Meeting on Tuesday 28 March 2017 at 4.30pm.

Misogyny as a Hate Crime

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.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/11

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


12/03/2017

AGM 2017

Agenda and annual report.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/10

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


03/03/2017

March/Rally for Durham Teaching Assistants

Saturday 25 March. Hear grassroots, union and guest speakers and watch the Reel News film showing the Durham Teaching Assistants’ story.

LGBT Policy weekend

Saturday 25 March, to plan UNISON LGBT activities for the year ahead.

HOPE Not Hate Event

A joint training session for trade union and community activists on how to organise to defeat the politics of division.  18 March 2017.

NE People’s Assembly

March calendar of events and activities.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/9

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


01/03/2017

Branch Committee

Papers for the meeting on Monday 6 March.

Retired members

Papers for the retired members' meeting on 17 March.


24/02/2017

Branch Lottery

Winners in February.

Workers Memorial Day

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.


23/02/2017

Labour Research Department Fact 79/8

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

In the papers

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


22/02/2017

Labour Research Department Fact 79/7

Minimum wage cheats named and shamed

Inflation hits three-year high

Unemployment at 11-year low

Inflation erodes growth in weekly earnings

In the papers

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


12/02/2017

Disabled Members Policy Weekend

Sunderland, 19/20 May 2017.

Members training

Sign Language (BSL) Introduction, 2 March 2017

Dementia Workshop, 30 March 2017

Reps training

Regional Education Calendar 2017

In the papers

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?

Labour Research Department Fact 79/6

Review of tribunal fees finally published

Plan to tackle abusive hiring practices

Insecure work on rise

Twenty eight directors share £68.37 million


05/02/2017

Affiliations and donations

A list of affiliations and donations that the branch committee has approved since January 2015.


07/02/2017

In the papers

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

Labour Research Department Fact 79/5

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

UNIMAG 33

A quarterly periodical updating branch reps on employment law.


06/02/2017

Branch Lottery

Winners in January.


27/01/2017

Young Members

Northern Region Young Members AGM

Black Members

UNISON Northern Region Black Members Forum AGM 2017.

LV Car Insurance

Discounted car insurance for UNISON members.


26/01/2017

North East March and Rally for #ourNHS

In Newcastle on Saturday 4 February.

Branch Committee

Papers for the meeting on 6 February.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/4

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


22/01/2017

Women's Network AGM

Agenda and nomination form for the mmeting on 4 February.

Disabled Members

Annual Meeting of the Regional Disabled Members Self Organised Group on Tuesday 31 January 2017.

Members training

Mental Health Awareness Workshop on Thursday 16 February.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/3

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

In the Papers

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


15/01/2017

Anne Frank Trust Exhibition

UNISON have now been allocated two spots on the 16 January to have guided tours around the Anne Frank exhibition. 

Labour Research Department Fact 79/2

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


13/01/2017

Branch Lottery

Winners in December.


06/01/2017

The Trade Union Act and UNISON's Political Fund

Consultation on political fund review: December-January

Reading Ahead

We are having our first Reading Ahead launch at Welford Learning Zone on 11 January between 10am and 11am.

Trade Union Reps courses

Book now to secure your place on one of the courses for Reps at Newcastle College starting in January 2017.

Northern Region Training Programme

UNISON courses in 2017. These courses are free and open to all members unless otherwise stated.

Labour Research Department Fact 79/1

'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