I writing to you today with some good news for all GMB members in EEAS.
After years of trying and many discussions GMB has finally become a recognised union within EEAS. Previously the only recognised union was Unison, but now RCN and GMB have joined the party.
What does this mean for GMB members?
For GMB members not much will change overnight, however long to medium term you should start to notice it’s effects. Your Reps at EEAS will have more time with members, more influence over decisions and more ability to drive change within the trust. As a recognised union we are entitled to take part in a range of meetings, voicing your opinions regarding changes to policies, equipment, vehicles, and much more. I say voicing your opinions because GMB is a membership led union, we want to hear your opinions before making decisions on your behalf. Moving forward we will be writing to you more often with surveys so you can have your say, before we take those views back to the EEAS hierarchy. If your colleagues do not currently receive GMB emails I would encourage them to let me know they would like to be added to the mailing list so they can have their input moving forward.
Recognition also makes becoming a GMB Rep easier and allows for facility time (time out of your normal working day to undertake union duties). If anyone is interested in becoming a GMB Rep please let me know and I can pass your details on to the branch, we are particularly keen to find a Rep in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire, but just because you aren’t in either of those counties doesn’t mean we don’t need you.
The other thing you may start to see is more orange, the orange wave is coming and there is no stopping it now.
PAY BALLOTS AND INFO
If you have not received your virtual pay ballot or one via the post, please let me know ASAP so I can get a replacement sent out to you. If you receive this email, you should have received a ballot to this email address.
Some members have asked for clarification regarding the ballot question. It should have two options ACCEPT or REJECT however it is YES or NO, in case any clarification is needed YES = ACCEPT and NO = REJECT. Sorry for any confusion this has caused.
We have held two webinars recently and there were a couple of similar questions and statements that came up.
- What is the difference between consolidated and non-consolidated pay?
Consolidated pay is added to your base pay and stays there for life.
Non-consolidated pay is a one-off payment (similar to a bonus) and is not added to you base pay moving forward.
- Why has GMB recommended Acceptance of the offer / why has GMB accepted the offer?
GMB has not accepted the offer on your behalf, what we have done is recommend the offer for you to accept. Ultimately members will decide whether the offer is fair and if they choose to reject it nationally GMB will continue to back you and push the government to get back round the table. In order to get the government round the table again we anticipate that, longer strikes with less derogation would be needed as the reaction to strikes at the previous scale was the offer you have today.
There are a few reasons why GMB have recommended acceptance of the offer.
- This wasn’t the first offer, negotiations started far below the figures offered and went on for two weeks before getting to the point we are at today. The government made it clear that the current offer is the final offer and there was no more room for negotiations.
- One of the governments conditions for the offer was that the majority of unions had to recommend acceptance, or the offer would be pulled. As a membership led union, we had to give members the opportunity to vote on the offer, whilst some of you may feel the offer isn’t acceptable, we have a diverse membership within the NHS and for lower bands the offer is over or close to inflation.
- There is the potential that if the offer is rejected the government could revert to the pay review body’s suggestion of a 3.5% increase to base pay. This would mean the 5% offer would go along with the lump sum payment, they could also choose to impose the current offer or an unknown alternative. I don’t mention this to try and scary anyone into voting a certain way, I just don’t want members to vote without knowing all the possible outcomes.
- The decision to recommend acceptance wasn’t made by one person or a group of GMB employees, it was a simple majority vote from the national GMB NHS committee which is made up of member led branches across the UK.
The key part to remember is that NHS members across the GMB nationally will be the ones who decide whether the offer is accepted or rejected so please make sure you vote. GMB will back whatever you decide to do.
Finally, I just want to thank you all for your support, GMB is constantly growing within EEAS and that is down to members talking to their colleagues and encouraging them to join, it’s also down to your GMB branch within EEAS, your local Reps and Donna Thomas and Chris Bretton, who work tirelessly to improve your working lives and support members.
I hope you all get to have at least a little break sometime over the long weekend, stay strong and stay safe.
GMB Regional Organiser – Norwich Office
GMB London Region
Mobile: 07974 250946
Office: 01603 626492
Posted: 7th April 2023