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Alignment of Terms and Conditions: Update

12 November 2012

Your union is aware that in some areas Thales are seeking to put pressure on members to sign the new aligned contracts.

Within ITMS talks are ongoing with the trade unions on the formation of a new collective agreement on areas such as rostering, travelling time and aspects of overtime and shift payments.

Talks on our key issues are no longer making progress. The current position on our key priorities is outlined below:

Redundancy

For some time Thales have made it clear that they are not willing to significantly compromise on the issue of redundancy pay and arrangements. This is key for our members with enhanced redundancy pay from Red Book/old British Rail contracts for whom Thales proposals were a significant detriment.

Since publication of the final contract your union has been seeking legal advice on the wording of the new contracts. Following consultation with our legal advisors it has been confirmed that as the new contract does not contain any contractual terms around redundancy pay or arrangements then this does not replace any enhanced current entitlements.

Members who wish to sign the contracts and only have outstanding concerns around current enhanced redundancy pay and arrangements can protect their entitlements by submitting an addendum to the contract (wording below) in advance of electronic signing. This should be submitted to HR Shared Services or the relevant HR Director and a copy of the email should be retained.

Annual Leave

Thales have refused to move further on the matter of annual leave entitlements. The current position is as far as we can go through negotiations. Any individual who signs the new contract is accepting the terms within it relating to annual leave.

Overtime/Shift Payments

Improvements have been made in the areas of overtime and shift payments, including extension of payments in certain circumstances to more senior grades not previously eligible. Discussions continue about the wording of the criteria in which these will be paid.

Should you still have outstanding concerns which prevent you from signing the aligned contract then please contact your local rep of the Members’ Helpdesk where we can provide you with further advice and support.

 

Addendum to Contract

 I am signing this contract following advice from the TSSA union to the following effect.

•             The new contract states, at clause 21, that there are collective agreements in force that affect terms and conditions of employment.

•             The new contract is silent on redundancy entitlement.

•             It is clear that the existing ‘Red Book’ collective agreements have not been the subject of variation by agreement with TSSA.

•             I am aware that Thales has produced a new redundancy policy but this explicitly states that it does not have contractual effect.

•             A non-contractual policy statement will not have the effect of varying a pre-existing contractually binding collective agreement.

•             I therefore sign up on the basis that in the event of a future redundancy, this contract does not waive my rights to Red Book terms

 I also reserve my rights to assert the application of Regulation 4 and 18 of the TUPE Regulations 2006, which taken together mean that my contractual rights which transferred when my employment transferred to Thales are protected, and that any ‘agreement’ to exclude or limit the application of that protection is void.

The Court of Appeal (Regent Security Services Ltd. V Power [2007] EWCA Civ 1188) has confirmed that an employee is entitled to the benefits of any new contractual terms, while retaining the right to assert any pre-existing terms.

It is on this basis that I agree to the new contract. For the avoidance of doubt I do not agree to any variation of my contractual redundancy entitlement.

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