Labour Research November 2016

Union news

‘Organise in privatised services’

Probation officers at their union Napo’s annual conference were urged by the chair of another union to push for union recognition when their services are privatised.

Prison Officers Association chair Mike Rolfe told Napo delegates “not to make the same mistake we did” when his union refused to organise in privatised prisons 20 years ago. He said: “To be honest, it was a mistake because we need to recognise everyone.”

Meanwhile, the conference reaffirmed that national bargaining must be maintained in the probation service despite private operators threatening to walk away from negotiations. 

It said that a separate proposal, for qualified local bargaining, would promote a “race to the bottom”.