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Network Rail Bands 1-4 Dispute Information Briefing

28 June 2011

This is a critical time for Bands 1-4 staff. Negotiations on the 2011 pay review have ended without agreement. The company are imposing their final position of a 2.5% pay pot and distribute it through their arbitrary and iniquitous Performance Related Pay system.

 

Network Rail’s final offer

The offer is just 2.5% on the pay pot with a sum of £600,000 set aside to try to address individual cases. Network Rail estimate there are several hundred managers who are paid less, or only marginally more than, the basic pay of the staff they manage. The company offered to ‘engage in constructively dialogue’ with TSSA’s concerns with regard to equal pay - but cancelled a recent meeting. The season ticket subsidy will however increase with a maximum benefit to staff of £150 p/a.

 Your pay – the facts

· The 2011 rise follows a below-inflation 2% pay pot in 2010 and a pay freeze in 2009.

· NR Bands 1-4 differentials with other staff groups are being eroded following two years of inferior pay rises. Bands 5-8 in Maintenance & Operations received a 5.2% pay increase and have a guaranteed above-inflation increase for next year.

· The iniquitous PRP system remains in place – exactly as it is. TSSA’s survey highlighted that 76% of respondents rated ‘good’ last year received less than 2%. Unsurprisingly only 8% said they were happy with the current PRP system.

TSSA’s response

Following the final negotiating meeting, TSSA Bands 1-4 Area Council reps met to discuss NR’s final position. Your reps rejected the offer and it was agreed that the NR’s Chief Executive should be approached to try to find a resolution to the impasse. Failing any progress, TSSA would have to ballot for industrial action. TSSA’s approach to Network Rail was rejected and the company reiterated its final position as above and declared they are unilaterally imposing the 2.5% rise.

Industrial action is only ever a last resort for TSSA. It is deeply regrettable that the company has not continued to negotiate and so has left members with a choice between accepting the imposition of another unfair and unjustified low pay rise or balloting for industrial action. It is time for Bands 1-4 staff to stand up and be counted.

Next Steps

The ballot for industrial action is being prepared now. The ballot will be a fully lawful postal ballot to members’ home addresses and will be conducted by an external independent balloting agency the ERBS. Members will be asked two questions: 1) Are you prepared to take strike action? 2) Are you prepared to take action short of a strike? When we have your mandate for action, your reps will determine when and how we take our action to maximise its effectiveness.

TSSA will be campaigning for a YES vote to both questions. These are EIGHT REASONS why:

1. This is the third year of low and unfair pay rises.

2. Band 1-4 members have been patient while other NR grades have received DOUBLE their pay rise - an affront to every member.

3. The iniquities of PRP for all members are to remain in place.

4. There has been no progress on the dysfunctional grading structure, a fair rate for the job, or the unacceptable gender pay gap for women managers - despite strong evidence from our survey.

5. Increasing inflation has hit everyone’s standard of living while changes to income tax thresholds, National Insurance and family tax benefits have meant net incomes are falling.

6. NR’s emphasis on bonuses means the value of Bands 1-4 basic salaries is declining and having a negative impact on pensions. Unpredictable and often unfair bonuses only deliver for a limited number of managers.

7. NR have failed to recognise the need to adopt remote and flexible working policies to help staff , even in major reorganisations such as Milton Keynes.

8. The problems of long working hours and the extent of unpaid overtime will continue unchecked.

Your pay – Your Future

Get involved in this campaign about your pay and your future. Join TSSA if you haven’t yet. It is up to all of us to win a fair deal on pay for 2011.

Contact: organising@tssa.org.uk / Helpdesk: 0800 328 267

Download this pdf

  fair pay leaflet june '11

 

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