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TfL seek to force the pace on redundancies

11 April 2011

TfL have asked TSSA and the other unions to enter into discussions over proposed changes to the Organisational Change Policy (OCP). OCP is the policy which sets out the process for dealing with organisational change and minimum standards for how staff are treated.

We believe that the contents of this policy give rise to contractual entitlements to our members: not least the contractual entitlement to a period of 4 months in a redeployment pool, and access to the voluntary severance scheme.

TfL arbitrarily asserts that the policy is non-contractual and change need merely be consulted upon rather than requiring negotiation. The difference is that consultation does not require an agreed outcome (change can be imposed) whereas a negotiation requires agreement before change can be introduced.

We do not accept that this is a matter for consultation, and assert that changes can only be introduced by agreement.

Mushrooms

We are concerned with the undue haste in which the ‘consultation’ is being driven. Meetings are arranged at short notice, irrespective of whether trade union reps are available, with the threat that they will go ahead whether or not the TSSA can attend.

TfL have “embargoed” detail of their proposed changes. This means that while they seek to consult, staff are kept in the dark. What are they afraid of you knowing? How can we discuss changes if we do not know what they are and cannot discuss them with you?

Project Horizon

Our wider concern is that TfL are determined to force through contractual changes in advance of announcing mass redundancies as part of Project Horizon. We view this as a cynical attempt to remove your contractual rights in a period where proposed redundancies are imminent.

Your TSSA Representatives have raised concerns about:

- TfL’s unsubstantiated assertions that the OCP was a matter for consultation, not negotiation
- The proposed OCP refers to contractual rights not just policy matters
- The need for all meetings to be mutually agreed between the parties following the resolution of the above issues
- Confirmation of the process by which the changes were to be discussed through both TfL and LUL machinery.
- Whether the changes have any potential discriminatory elements

To date we have not received a meaningful response to these concerns.

TSSA - Standing firm

Your union is therefore taking the position that:

- the OCP is a policy which gives rise to contractual entitlements and in line with the general principles of contract law, these entitlements cannot be varied without agreement.
- the process of ‘consultation’ which has been initiated is not meaningful, as it has been rushed, the briefing has been inadequate and the employer has failed to respond to enquiries from the TSSA that would allow us to participate meaningfully in the discussions.

Your views matter

While TfL do not seem to want to gain your input, TSSA does. Please share your views with us via our online survey

Please ask your colleagues to participate – the more responses we collect, the better we will be able to represent your views. Just forward the link.

If your colleagues are not members of TSSA, now is the time to join. Joining forms can be downloaded from our website (www.tssa.org.uk).

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