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Amey's propaganda threats

29 June 2011

 

As a result of our collective strength Amey have moved marginally upwards in their offer over pay. This consists mostly of proposals to "rob Peter to pay Paul" and, in effect, no new money has been put on the table. Please see the latest update on the TSSA website:

http://www.tssa.org.uk/en/what-we-can-do-for-you/Your-company/company-pages/amey/index.cfm/amey-industrial-action

They are still refusing to concede that all staff should be included in the pay rises that your union negotiates.

Amey have threatened to launch a propaganda attack on TSSA should we refuse to cave in to their demands. This is a quite usual tactic that employers resort to when they cannot justify their position by more rational means.

We have heard it all before:

"The union is not democratic" - a bit rich coming from a Company that imposes its will over pay for many staff without recourse to negotiations and without any vote of those affected. Unlike TSSA, where you have had the chance to vote in ballots and surveys.

"Most staff do not want to have a say over their pay rises via negotiated settlements" - TSSA believes that most people do want the better deals negotiated by the Union. We have even proposed that Amey give a secret ballot on whether you want union negotiated increases or not to those outside pay bargaining. Amey has refused to give you a democratic vote. Perhaps because they know what the outcome would be?

"Industrial action is a waste of time and money" - if this is the case, why have Amey only sought to re-open pay talks after you voted to take industrial action ballot and are so keen to undermine our collective position?

"Any action could result in job losses" - did we take industrial action before the last round of redundancies? Or the redundancies before that? TSSA has asked Amey on dozens of occasions for a universal policy on redundancy and a commitment that no-one will be forced out who does not wish to take VS. The Company has always refused. There are no guarantees in any case, action or not.

The reality is that this dispute is not just about pay (although with the cost of living soaring almost as high as Amey's profit margins, we could all do with more pay), it is also about basic respect and dignity at work.

Winning collective bargaining means that, if Amey should seek to harmonise contracts, you will be in a better place to negotiate the best single contract possible. The alternative is that groups of staff can be played off against each other and important contractual terms may be reduced or lost altogether.

We do not wish to have to take industrial action, but we also do not wish to be treated in a high-handed manner and paid peanuts while the senior managers, directors and shareholders pick up megabucks.

We are always hopeful that Amey will see sense and come to a reasonable deal that we can all live with:

A decent pay rise – matching that for comparable workers elsewhere

Proper pay negotiations covering all staff - surely this would fit in well to the One Amey ideal?

The chances of achieving this are greatly increased by sticking together not folding at the first hurdle

If you are concerned about any rumours or propaganda being distributed by Amey, please contact your Reps or the TSSA Helpdesk for advice. You have the right to work in an environment free from fear.

United we bargain, divided we beg.

 

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