6 September 2012
Modern union reps have a lot to give their fellow employees and the organisations that employ them. In their day-to-day work lay union representatives are rarely the subject of media attention but they undertake many types of tasks.
Reps can negotiate with employers, represent members and deal with health and safety issues, and staff skills and training. They present the views and ideas of the workforce to their employer to improve working practices and workplace performance. The TUC estimates this dedicated time for union work, known as facility time, saves employers in the private and public sectors £701 million annually.
Do you have a positive story to tell about how your trade union has helped you personally or made a difference in your workplace?
What would have happened if your local representatives had not been able to take the time to help you?
The Cabinet Office has launched proposals to reduce facility time allowances and facilities support for trade union representatives and members in the civil service.
Formal national consultation with PCS and the other national trade unions began on 23 July and is expected to continue over the coming weeks.
Read and share the union's views on the government's proposals.
Some PCS groups and branches are intending to submit their own responses and the Cabinet Office is also inviting individual civil servants to respond to its proposals. Francis Maude minister for the Cabinet Office has said that this is so that he can fully consider how facility time allowances affect all employees, whether they are union members or not.
The full consultation document can be found on the Cabinet Office website.
Members and reps can send comments by email, by 7 September, to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or by post to:
CS Workforce Reform Team
4th Floor – Red Zone – Bank 20
1 Horseguards Road
London SW1A 2HQ
Use this opportunity to tell the minister how current facility time agreements support the vital work that trade unions do in the civil service and the difficulties that would arise for employees and for the employer if these arrangements were undermined.
Without adequate facility time it is very difficult to provide the level of support that members expect and deserve, or to enable members’ views to be fed into the union’s democratic process.
PCS wants the government to fully consider the benefits that facility time brings to workplaces and employers, as well as to trade union members and representatives themselves. Your participation can help us get this message across.
Let us know what you have told the Cabinet Office. Send a copy of your response to email@example.com