Our Ref B/14/3
8th April 2020
TO ALL RMT MEMBERS AT NCT
FURLOUGH ARRANGEMENTS - CORONAVIRUS - NOTTINGHAM COMMUNITY TRANSPORT
I write in relation to discussions that have been held with your employer over the ongoing Coronavirus situation and the recent decision to furlough staff under the Government’s Job Retention Scheme. Your union has been in ongoing discussions with your employer but regrettably we consider there has been a breakdown in communication since we have raised major Health & Safety issues over drivers’ wellbeing at work
As you may be aware, the Government Job Retention Scheme allows businesses to claim back 80% of employee costs up to a maximum of £2,500 a month for 3 months (From 1st March 2020). While being furloughed each individual should earn either the same month’s earning from the previous year or the average monthly earnings from the 2019-20 tax year, whichever is greater.
Whilst we understand that NCT are now providing the minimum requirements under the government’s scheme, this has not yet been provided with this in writing despite a number of requests from our lead officer. In our view the company’s response to our concerns to date has been obstructive. Whilst we are in an unprecedented and difficult set of circumstances, this should in no way stop companies going through the normal collective bargaining arrangements and negotiating with recognised trade unions such as RMT.
I have today written to the Managing Director to remind them of their responsibilities to consult and negotiate with RMT as outlined in our Collective Bargaining Agreement. Additionally I have requested an urgent written confirmation of their current policy in relation to the furloughing of staff and furthermore requested a meeting is arranged with your lead officer as soon as possible in order to address these issues.
I will keep members fully informed of developments.