Knowsley Branch news of GMB trade union
8 July 2019


Further to recent rulings in the Court of Justice of the European Union and the Employment Appeal Tribunals has ruled that UK law in relation to the calculation of holiday pay is not in line with European law.

For most workers the calculation of holiday is straightforward and they receive the same pay for each week of a holiday as they do for the rest of the year, but the position is more difficult where pay varies because of factors such as overtime, shift pay, allowances and standby payments.

The court rulings compel employers to ensure that if regular overtime, standby pay etc is paid then they should be calculated and included in holiday pay payments.

The GMB has attempted to resolve this matter with Knowsley Borough Council to no avail which has left us with no alternative but to commence legal proceedings.

Who might have a claim?
Anyone whose holiday pay is calculated on their basic pay only and excludes regular non-contractual overtime.

Regular overtime is defined as working once or twice every month or for a set period.

If you think you have a claim
If you think you may have a claim then please contact Karen Hardwick or Paul Richards for your questionnaire which should be returned with the relevant documents as soon as possible.

What next
When we have received your questionnaire and relevant documents we will assess if you have a claim and contact you directly with the outcome.

Please ensure that in the last two years that you have been regularly working overtime. If it is only on a few occasions ie once or twice a year then you will not be eligible to claim.

Update- Victory

After a recent victory, one of our members has now won her claim and been awarded a lump sum of money and extra hours on her contract, also there are many more holiday pay claims in the hands of our solicitor’s.

If you believe you may have a claim please contact the branch to arrange a workplace visit to discuss this further.


Waste Services

Members in this service will be aware that the GMB & Unite met with management on the 21st June 2019 to continue talks on the working practice 'task & finish' as well as other issues expressed by our members.

At this meeting, we made it clear to management that union members had instructed us to raise several issues which, if remained unresolved would lead to a collective dispute. We set a 1-month deadline for the council to act.

A number of dates have been proposed for this coming August, once a date has been confirmed with management we will then consult with our members.


ForHousing Consultative ballot

GMB Members within ForHousing got in touch to express concerns around a recent Pay offer of 2.1% by the company. On further inspection, we agree fully with members and have expressed our disappointment on the offer for the following reasons.

In the last 3 years, the Pay for workers has fallen by 4.2% in real terms, therefore, making this the 4th year pay has not kept pace with inflation. The average pay rise within this sector has been higher than the proposed 2.1% rise. It is worth noting colleagues that Directors for this organisation received an 11% rise last year alone!

It is for these reasons that we have agreed to conduct a consultative ballot with union members. It is our recommendation that members reject this current pay offer.

GMB are recommending all members to Reject the current pay offer by inserting an X in both the reject options on the ballot form.

Ballot forms will be sent to all members via post in the next 5 working days. Details of how to return the ballot forms will be enclosed in the same letter, therefore, we ask all members to return them as soon as possible.


Bowring Park Golf Course "Keep this service in-house"
Bowring Park Golf Course was founded in 1913 and Bowring Park Golf Course is believed to be the first municipal course in England.

Bowring Park was taken over by a private company in 2011 from KMBC and it went bust on the 3rd October 2018, An emergency meeting was called with the GMB and management to try and resolve this problem, thankfully it was agreed that KMBC would keep the course open along with keeping all the staff employed. The GMB have thanked KMBC and the Councils leader for their support

On Friday the 28th June, Myself (Paul Richards) along with our Regional Officer (Michael Clark) met our members and management along with the Leader of the Council (Graham Morgan) for a catch-up and a conversation as to the future running of this golf course, we were informed that there is a number of companies are interested in Bowring but also the council would look at options to keep this service in-house, We made it clear at this meeting it is our intention that this course remains in-house and does not go back out to the private sector. In recent years the course has been handed to the private sector and as a result, the club itself has been damaged, the golfers themselves have been let down and most importantly working conditions have suffered from employees facing constant uncertainty.

It is our hope that the council will embrace this new opportunity to protect the future of the course and continue investing in this great facility for the community.


GMB 2019 Annual Conference
Guest speakers included
Sadiq Khan -London mayor
Allison Phillips - Daily Mirror Editor
Leroy Rosenior MBE - Show Racism The Red Card

June saw the 149th GMB Congress that was hosted in Brighton. The K28 branch was represented by Paul Richards who spoke on a number of issues on behalf of you the members and the North West and Irish region.

Specifically, the branch spoke on issues such as Justice for the Cammel Lairds dockyard workers, Public Sector Pay Scales and the branch also led on the campaign we first brought to Congress in 2017 to Ban The S*n from all GMB meetings, premises and buildings, This motion was called 'Don't buy the S*n rag- The Real Truth' The policy also covers a zero tolerance policy on any GMB staff corresponding or engaging with The Rag at any level. All delegates were presented with Posters produced by the K28 Branch to display in their branch offices and workplaces reminding GMB members of the policy.

We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate both the North West and Irish region as well as the national team particularly our General Secretary Tim Roache and national president Barbara Plant, for allowing the Congress to run smoothly and making it an enjoyable one for delegates. We look forward to next years Congress in Blackpool.


Overtime / Saturday - Sunday working

Do you work regular overtime or work regularly on a Saturday or a Sunday. If so can you please contact the Branch as we have been made aware that there is a potential issue with the payments especially If you do not receive the Enhanced Rates (Time and a half for weekdays or a Saturday or Double Time for a Sunday).


Sickness Absence Policy

I wanted to remind all GMB members that if you are called to an absence management review meeting, then please contact your GMB stewards (details are at the bottom of this page).

We are aware that some members are attending these hearings without a GMB representative and being sanctioned, your rep will be there to support you and enact law/policies that may be in place to work in your favour. The equalities act of 2010 has helped our members through some cases.

Your GMB stewards recently met to discuss issues/concerns around this matter and have been updated on the latest regulations so are well placed to support you.


Sickness Absence Monitoring

An important aspect of the new policy on Sickness Absence monitoring is the recording of sickness absence accurately by managers on My View.

This information is monitored by HR and managers who are informed if an RTW (return to work) is required or once a trigger point is reached.

There have been several incidents recently where it has been noticed that sickness absence has been recorded incorrectly on the system, which could in future mean staff be classed as having reached a trigger point when they haven’t.

I would advise all staff who have access to My View and who have had sickness absence to check their record is accurate.

Staff who are not able to access My View can ask to check their records with their line manager.

If at any time, you are advised by your manager that a trigger point has been reached, ask to check the information this is based on.