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Monday 04 September 2017

New rights for unions to be consulted about workplace changes

By MiP

Dave Prentis: Employers who fail to consult staff about working conditions will be taken to court.

Employers will obliged to consult unions on all issues affecting their members at work, including job losses, working hours and holiday pay, following a second major victory of the summer for UNISON in the courts.

Just two days after the Supreme Court outlawed tribunal fees, the Court of Appeal ruled that unions have a right to be consulted on all issues affecting members in the workplace, not just those specified in existing laws, such as redundancy and the transfer of workers from one employer to another under the TUPE regulations.

UNISON claimed the ruling will benefit thousands of employees whose rights at work are under threat and means that employers will face greater scrutiny over their treatment of staff.

Greater protection at work

General secretary Dave Prentis said: “This is the second major legal victory in a week for working people. It means that employees in any workplace where there’s a union will now benefit from greater protection at work.

“The message to bosses is they will have to treat their staff more fairly over pay and working conditions. If they fail to consult unions then they will be acting unlawfully and could be taken to court.”

The appeal court ruled that UNISON had the right to be consulted by Wandsworth Council over planned job losses affecting parks police. It also ruled that UNISON’s rights to consultation under Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects the right to form trade unions, had been breached.

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