August 27, 2020
Usdaw has called for an improved employment deal for workers in retail, manufacturing distribution and home delivery in recognition of the essential services they provided during lockdown.
A ban on zero-hours contracts, a £10 minimum wage for all workers, better protection against abuse, day-one employment rights for unfair dismissal and redundancy and equal pay are among the package of reforms that has been put forward by Usdaw.
The government needs to take swift action to support the aerospace industry if the UK is to retain its position as being a global leader in the sector, says Unite. The union has estimated that 12,000 jobs have been cut in the aerospace industry since the Covid-19 crisis.
More than 10,000 UK jobs went in a single week at the start of July, threatening an industry that generates £9 billion for the UK economy every year, according to Unite.
Facebook has been criticised for announcing that it’s new workplace communication app could be used by organisations as a union-busting tool. During an internal presentation, the app was said to be able to suppress the word “unionise” as an example of its content control feature. UNI Global Union has said it shows a “broader disregard for the right to freedom of association at Facebook and in the tech industry as a whole.”
The median standard pay settlement increase for July 2019 to June 2020 was 2.5%, figures from the Labour Research Department’s Payline database shows.
The median increase on the lowest pay rate was 2.6%.
Meanwhile, the median standard increase for the three months from April to June 2020 was 2.5%. Payline, which reports pay settlements from employers in both the public and private sectors, warns that coronavirus has led to many pay negotiations being paused so the published figures are based on fewer settlements than normal.
A total of 67% of workers want their workplaces to be spot-checked in person by inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive – to ensure they are complying with social distancing and safety rules.
A poll from Prospect showed that only 9% of workers would be satisfied with telephone checks. The union says funding cuts to the HSE need to be restored to allow its inspectors to properly monitor workplace health and safety risks.
Members of the pilots’ union BALPA working for Ryanair have voted overwhelmingly (96%) to accept 20% temporary pay cuts to save jobs that were under threat.
Ryanair announced in May that 330 pilot jobs were at risk in the UK, including 70 from four potential base closures (Leeds Bradford, Prestwick, Bournemouth and Southend).
The agreement to accept a pay cut will save 260 of the jobs that were at risk.
Brian Strutton, BALPA General Secretary, said: “In the circumstances this is the right thing to do even if it means accepting difficult temporary reductions in pay.”
Photo credit: Tobias Arhelger