Time off for Trade Union Duties & Activities - Arriva Rail North

 

Procedure Agreement 5:

 

Time off for Trade Union Duties & Activities

 

Parties

1        The parties to this Agreement are Arriva Rail North Ltd (hereafter referred to as ‘Northern’) on the first part and the trades unions (the Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen (ASLEF), the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT), UNITE/CS&EU and the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) on the second part.

Objective

2       To provide a framework and guidance for employees, who are elected or appointed in accordance with the Collective Bargaining Arrangements, to be permitted reasonable time off during working hours to carry out the duties of their particular trade union role.

Scope

3       Employees within the scope of Procedure Agreement 1 (General Collective Bargaining) Procedure Agreement 2 (Health & Safety at Work), Procedure Agreement 8 (Union Learning Agreement) and Procedure Agreement 7 (Management Staff) shall be within the scope of this Agreement.

Agreement

4       The parties agree that time off for trade union duties and activities will be addressed under the procedure set out in the annex to this Agreement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Signed on behalf of:

 

 

 

 

 

Northern

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen (ASLEF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UNITE (On behalf of CSEU)

 

 

Annex to Procedure Agreement 5

 

Time off for Trade Union Duties & Activities

 

Introduction

Reasonable time off during working hours will be afforded in order to:

(i)      carry out certain trade union duties

(ii)     take part in trade union activities

(iii)    undergo training relevant to trade union duties

Time off will be afforded to employees within the scope of the collective bargaining machinery in accordance with the provisions listed below and the notes for guidance set out in the appendix to this Agreement. The references in brackets to paragraph numbers relate to paragraphs in the notes for guidance.

 

These provisions cover the requirements of section) sections 168 to 170  of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992, Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations and the ACAS Code of Practice 3 “Time off for Trade Union Duties and Activities”.

Northern is committed to equality and diversity in the workplace based on fairness for everyone in our employment and will not discriminate on grounds of gender, marital status, race, ethnic origin, nationality, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, religious belief, age and membership or not of a trade union.  We oppose all forms of unlawful and unfair discrimination.  This applies equally to all Trade Union representatives. Full details of this procedure can be found in Procedure Agreement 9, Dignity at Work

Time off for trade union duties

  1. Employees appointed or elected to serve on Northern’s Joint Committee, Joint Safety Committee, Employee Council(s) and as local staff/ health & safety or Union Learning representatives will be permitted reasonable time off during working hours to carry out trade union duties connected with their remit under Procedure Agreement 1 (General Collective Bargaining), Procedure Agreement 2 (Health and Safety at Work) Procedure Agreement 7 (Management Staff) and Procedure Agreement 8 (ULR).

 

  1. Examples of the type of circumstances for which time off for trade union duties might be granted are listed in the notes for guidance (paragraph 1).

 

  1. Employees of Northern who are elected as Executive committee members or presidents of the recognised railway Trade Unions will also be allowed time off to carry out trade union duties within the notes for guidance (see paragraph 2).

 

  1. In certain circumstances, employees who are trade union branch officials might be involved in trade union duties not associated with Northern. In these circumstances employees do not qualify for time off with pay.

 

  1. The amount and frequency of time off should be reasonable in all circumstances.  Where possible, a mutually convenient time should be agreed which minimises the effect on production or services of the business.  The notes for guidance (paragraph 3) detail arrangements for time off for attending joint meetings.
  2. Payment is made for time off for trade union duties in accordance with the notes for guidance (paragraph 5).

 

  1. Employees and Union officials making requests for time off under these arrangements must provide management with as much notice as possible, together with details of the purpose for such time off, its timing and the duration of time off required.
  2. Where available, management will make available to representatives, facilities necessary for them to perform their duties efficiently.  Advice for dealing with applications for facilities is provided in the notes for guidance.

Time off for trade union activities

  1. A trade union representative is to be permitted reasonable time off during working hours to take part in trade union activities.  However, payment is not made for such time off.

 

  1. Examples of the type of circumstances for which time off for trade union activities might be granted are listed in the notes for guidance.

 

  1. The amount and frequency of time off should be reasonable in all circumstances.

 

  1. There is no right to time off for trade union activities that consist of or involves industrial action.

 

 

Industrial relations training

  1. Local/staffs’ side representatives within the scope of the collective bargaining machinery established by Procedure Agreement 1 (General Collective Bargaining) and Procedure Agreement 7 (Management Staff) are to be permitted reasonable time off during working hours to undergo training in aspects of industrial relations relevant to the carrying out of their trade union duties.

 

  1. Representatives nominated to attend an approved trade union course will be granted paid release in accordance with the notes for guidance (paragraph 8).

 

  1. Management should normally be given at least twenty-eight days’ notice of nominations for training courses and, if requested, be provided with a copy of the training syllabus.

 

 
Health & Safety Representatives training
  1. Arrangements for H&S Representatives Training are detailed in Procedure Agreement 2 and SMSP 1.08

 

Union Learning Representatives training

  1. Arrangements for Union Learning Representatives Training are detailed in          Procedure Agreement 8.

 

Appendix A to Procedure Agreement 5

Time off for Trade Union Duties & Activities - Notes for guidance

 

Introduction

These notes for guidance amplify the provisions of Procedure Agreement 5 (Time off for Trade Union Duties and Activities).

 

Trade union duties

  1. Examples of the type of employees and the circumstances for which time off for trade union duties might be granted are as follows:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elected or appointed as Local/Staff side representative within the Collective Bargaining Machinery

Trade union officials who have no locus within collective bargaining machinery, but might act as spokesperson/ representative of trade union members

Trade Union Duties/Activities

Whether time off with pay allowed

Joint meetings/inquiries

Yes

No

Preliminary staff side discussion prior to or following joint meetings

Yes

No

Consultation with members of staff prior to or following joint meetings

Yes

No

Consultation with staff side of higher or lower level of machinery on matters directly affecting consultation or negotiation in which involved

 

Yes

 

No

Interviews with/acting as advocate, representative or witness on behalf of fellow employee at disciplinary hearing, or in connection with an individual grievance/Dignity at Work complaint

 

Yes

Yes (provided the employee is not, or acting as, a full-time paid trade union official)

Acting on behalf of a fellow employee before an outside official body, such as an industrial tribunal, which is dealing with an industrial relations matter concerning Northern.

 

Yes

Yes (provided the employee is not, or acting as, a full-time paid trade union official)

Facility for explaining the role of trade unions to new employees

 

Yes

Yes(provided the employee is not, or acting as, a full-time paid trade union official)

(iv)                

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Full Time / Part Time Release

 

Time off without pay will be granted to employees who are union executive committee members, If elected to an office, which requires full time release, Northern will commit to the individual returning to their substantive role & location, with no loss of service related benefits. If the role becomes subject to a reorganisation then the individual will be afforded the same opportunities as all other affected employees at the time of the reorganisation through the agreed PT&R procedures.

 

 

Meeting arrangements

  1. Facilities for attending meetings in connection with trade union duties are as follows:

 

(i)                   Every endeavour shall be made to arrange joint meetings when local/staff side representatives are on duty and, if necessary, a turn of duty shall be altered or covered on the day in question, whenever possible, to enable attendance at the meeting.

(ii)                 Where this is not possible, see paragraph 5 for payment arrangements.

(iii)                Reasonable time off will be afforded to staff representatives to attend preliminary meeting prior to the joint meetings.

Payment Arrangements
  1. The following method of payment shall be applied in connection with time off for trade union duties during working hours:

 

(i)                 The total weekday earnings which the local/staffs’ side representatives would have received had they been at work during the period of attendance at meetings

or

(ii)                 The overall time in attending the meeting including travelling time, i.e. from booking on duty at the home station to booking off there except that, where an overnight stay is involved, the period of lodging shall not be counted

or

(iii)                  Average earnings based on the last representative 8 weeks where applicable*

 

*Average earnings payments are dependent on terms and conditions and not relevant to all grades. See Appendix B for details

Payment is based on which is the greater of the relevant options.

 

Rest day payments

  1. In the case of staff representatives who would have been rostered for a free / rest day on which a joint meeting is arranged, then the employee can take either an alternative day off or payment will be made for that day subject to their grade agreement.

For those staff representatives with no contractual entitlement to overtime, it is permissible to take time off in lieu for any hours worked in excess of their contractual employment time for any agreed Trade Union duties.

Expenses shall be paid as appropriate when attending meetings for which leave with pay is granted, including overnight expenses where necessarily incurred and in line with the company business expenses policy.

Facilities

  1. Facilities (such as accommodation for meetings, access to telephone and notice boards) necessary for local/staff side representatives to perform their duties efficiently will be provided when requested.  The use of office facilities may also be made available, provided it does not impinge on the operation of the business.  Where the volume of a representative’s work justifies it, provision where available or reasonable use allowed of Northern computer/printer and copying facilities for the pursuance of industrial relations business provided that:

 

(i)                  Appropriate authority is obtained from Northern management

(ii)                Northern business takes precedence

(iii)               Stationery is provided by the trades union

(iv)              Users comply with the Company’s IS Acceptable Users policy and other policies relating to the workplace environment

(v)               No activities associated with disrupting Northern business and services are undertaken

 

         Notice board facilities for the use of the trades unions will be provided by the company in accordance with local staff accommodation arrangements.  A nominated representative to manage the notice board, who will be responsible to ensure regular updated and correct material is posted.  No personal, inflammatory or derogatory material likely to offend employees or the business is to be allowed and the company may ask for such items to be removed

 

Trade union activities

 

  1. Examples of types of trade union activities are as follows:

 

 

Whether requests for time off from trade union members should be granted (without pay only) subject to the exigencies of the service

Acting as a representative in a meeting of an official policy-making body of the union such as executive committee or annual conference (i.e. this is defined as only being applicable to a policy-making body of the union at national level)

 

 

Yes *

Acting as representative on external bodies such as the boards of training or local enterprise councils

 

Yes

For voting in a trade union election

Yes

Meetings of trade union members excluding branch meetings

Yes†

Branch meetings

No

Industrial action internal or external to railways

No

*       Amount of leave necessary to be confirmed with headquarters of the trade union concerned.

†       To be allowed only on condition that urgency of situation necessitates a meeting within working hours and that there would be no effect on production or services.

Northern recognises that employees may be requested to attend the National Conference or meetings of external bodies when acting as a representative of their relevant Trade Union. Requests for such time off will be dealt with on an individual basis and may be granted (without pay only) subject to the exigencies of the service

Industrial relations training

  1. Northern recognises:-

 

(i)                   the TUC stage one and two (stepping up – advanced course for union reps) representatives training course,

 

or

 

(ii)                a TUC approved Trade Union specific stage one and two representatives training run by a recognised trade union

 

or

 

(iii)               an equivalent TUC approved Trade Union representatives training that covers the same syllabuses as stage one and two training but in a different format run by a recognised trade union. (E.G. TSSA representative courses are called Zones instead of stages)

 

 

These courses in are recognised as providing initial basic training as referred to in the ACAS Code of Practice. Release to attend a course covered by (ii) will be conditional upon Northern being given the opportunity to examine and approve the syllabus and upon the course being no longer than the TUC basic course for staff representatives.  It is not considered that there is any necessity for an individual to attend more than one such course.

 

  1. Any additional training requests should be sent to the Head of HR Operations  who will discuss it with the relevant FTO as Northern recognises there may be some additional requirements for certain representatives in the wider aspects of employment relations relevant to the duties of a Trade Union Official or their own continual development as a representative.

 

  1. The business will consider nominations from the appropriate Full Time Officer for the release of a staff representative to attend TUC stage 3 training. A written business case must be provided by the nominating Trade Union which should clearly demonstrate where the individual has constantly exceeded the basic requirements of the staff representative role, and the benefits the additional training will provide both to the individual and the business. It is accepted that these requests shall be the exception and not the norm.

 

Any nominations will be considered by the appropriate Senior Manager /“Head Of” for a decision as to whether this training will be supported by Northern.

 

  1. Appropriate free rail transport, where reciprocal duty travel arrangements are in place, will be provided when attending these courses.

 

  1. Employees nominated to attend any other trade union sponsored course, where there is no direct relevance or benefit to Northern, will be granted leave of absence without pay, (where the service allows) but in all cases local/staffs’ side representatives will be given priority.  No travelling facilities will be granted.
  1. In all cases the sponsoring trade union will be responsible for course fees and all other expenses incurred.

 

  1. Employees attending any day release class when they are on night duty will be relieved where necessary for two turns of duty.
  2. Not more than one local/staff side representative of the same work group/constituency will be released to attend a course of training on any one day unless agreed otherwise with the local manager.
  3. The amount and frequency of time off should be reasonable in all circumstances

Payment

  1. The following method of payment shall be applied:

(i)                 the total weekday earnings which the representatives concerned would have received had they been at work during the period they were on the course

                                                 or

(ii)                 the overall time in attending the course including travelling time to and from the relevant location

                                                            or

(iii)                Average earnings based on the last representative 8 weeks where applicable*

 

*Average earnings payments are dependent on terms and conditions and not relevant to all grades. See Appendix B for details

 

Payment is based on which is the greater of the relevant options

 

Industrial Relations training days falling on rest-days

NB Where attendance is required on a rostered rest day, an alternative rest-day will be given (where possible this will be the next available alternative day).