Important Milestone Reached

A truly significant milestone towards implementating single status was reached last Thursday when the Norwich City UNISON branch committee agreed to ballot members on the package offered by the council – with a recommendation to accept.

The latest round of negotiations saw the council accepting UNISON’s arguments in favour of enhancing the financial package for affected individuals. As a result, the offer was amended to include six months back pay for individuals whose pay is to increase and six months protection for those who will see their pay decrease.

The branch will now move to ballot members, which we hope will take place in early June. A ‘yes’ vote would represent the very last stage in the negotiation process, allowing the council to move on to implementation. Current projections indicate the new terms and conditions will come into effect on 1 October 2011.

The collective bargaining agreement in place between the city council and UNISON means a decision based on a UNISON ballot is binding on all staff – whether individuals are UNISON members or not.  We will be happy to discuss any membership issues with you.

We appreciate there have been many false dawns in relation to single status over the past few years but last weeks’ events have paved the way for implementation. We want to make sure all members are kept fully informed and up to date with key information about the progress of single status.

To kick this off we are beginning a series of joint communications aimed at informing all staff of the important milestones that lie ahead.

The council hopes to send letters to individuals’ home addresses at the end of May, ahead of the UNISON ballot, informing them of their personal outcomes. Before this date the council intends to publish FAQs on e-grapevine and make handbooks available for staff and managers.

The council will also be staging a series of roadshows to give all staff the opportunity to ask questions in a face-to-face setting.

Thank you to everyone who has contributed to the single status project to date. It is a testament to the benefits of collaborative working that we have finally reached this stage and can look forward to jointly ensuring the city council implements and maintains a transparent and fair pay structure going forward.

The single status steering group