Our Ref: HSR/2/29
Head Office Circular: NP/213/17
20th December 2017
ALL SHIPPING BRANCHES
ALL REGIONAL COUNCILS
Network Rail Life Saving Rules Policy
Further to Head Office Circular NP/180/17, 8th November 2017, an Avoidance of Disputes meeting has been held with the company. The following report arising from that meeting has been considered by the National Executive Committee in their session today:
The meeting was to discuss the dispute that had been declared with Network Rail in relation to the abuse of the Fair Culture and Disciplinary Procedures.
The company has now provided a set of written undertakings to address the dispute.
The most important provision is to withdraw the two un-consulted documents that they were using to steer and direct Fair Culture panels and consequently the outcomes of disciplinary hearings.
There will now be a fresh consultation on the issue of speeding at +20mph above the limit and this will involve all of the recognised trade unions with a view to achieving a revised document that will set out how such incidents will be treated and also setting out the mitigating factors that can be considered. The factors that RMT has registered for consideration are acknowledged in Appendix A of the letter.
The company also wishes to create a joint communication on speeding so that the clear message of how serious all speeding offences are is delivered.
The company was not prepared to accept the RMT’s suggestion that any sanction related to driving issues should be confined to driving of vehicles. This would in any case involve a re-negotiation of the disciplinary procedure itself. However they have stated that all relevant mitigation will be considered and that the decision rests with the hearing manager alone and that the full range of outcomes and penalties remain available.
Having consulted with our National Maintenance Council Representatives we are of the view that the letter and the undertakings are a positive step and that they address the issue in dispute. We can therefore commit to recommencing participation in Fair Culture investigations and panels.
Therefore, the recommendation to the NEC is - that we accept that the proposals are sufficient to address the immediate dispute; that we continue to develop the processes on speeding through participation in the forthcoming consultation, jointly draft an appropriate statement on speeding, and resume our participation in Fair Culture panels and investigations immediately.
On considering this report the National Executive Committee have made the following Decision:
That we note the report on file from our lead officer regarding the avoidance of disputes meeting which took place on 23rd November.
We instruct the General Secretary that we accept that the proposals are sufficient to address the immediate dispute and that we continue to develop the processes on speeding through participation in the forthcoming consultation.
Further that we jointly draft an appropriate statement on speeding, and resume our participation in Fair Culture panels and investigations immediately.
Relevant Branches and Regional Councils to be informed.
I am acting in accordance with this instruction. Please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of relevant members.