Workplace Report April 2023


BARGAINING Budget day sees biggest day of strikes yet Trouble brewing at local authorities Payline deals show above-average increases

EQUALITY Anti-strike bill would hit BAME workers, equality bodies warn Childcare costs forcing women out of work

LEARNING AND TRAINING Union learning and training provision boosted

RECRUITMENT AND ORGANISATION Think tank calls on Welsh government to empower trade unions

EUROPE Deutsche Post settles after overwhelming strike vote

LAW AT WORK Employment law — the latest cases

HEALTH AND SAFETY Dog attack increase is no surprise to postal union HSE ‘must act on harassment’ Still no answers seven years on

RISING TO THE CHALLENGE: PAY BARGAINING IN 2022-23 Negotiators have responded to soaring inflation with a level of pay settlements not seen for many years

SAFETY IN MOTION: HOW UNIONS ARE TACKLING TRANSPORT DANGERS The recent train crash in Greece and the disastrous derailment of a freight train in the USA have highlighted the consequences of poor health and safety in transport. We look at how unions are campaigning to improve road and rail safety in the UK

Pay and prices

Inflation rises as wage growth slows (133 words)

RPI inflation unexpectedly jumped to a huge 13.8% in February, driven largely by a rise in food prices. It is expected to fall later in the year ...
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Full-time weekly average earnings (39 words)

ASHE 2022 median uprated by AWE. ...
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XpertHR (21 words)

Median increases for three months to end of February 2023 ...
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Labour Research Department’s Payline database (271 words)

Percentage increases on lowest basic rates (by agreements covered) ...
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Average weekly earnings (AWE) (237 words)

(r) revised, (p) provisional ...
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Prices (65 words)

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2023 Forecasts (37 words)

Source: HM Treasury, Forecasts for the UK economy, February 2023. 1Fourth quarter 2Calendar year
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Bargaining news

Minimum wage goes up (881 words)

Roaring inflation is shrinking the value of our wages and affecting what employers feel they need to pay (by agreement or by choice, if not by law). ...
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Historic Amazon worker strike (125 words)

Over 500 Amazon workers, members of the GMB union, took week-long strike action in March following anger over being offered a 50 pence per hour pay ...
Open access

Hounslow parking officers win £4,000 rise (142 words)

Parking enforcement officers across Hounslow, employed by Serco and members of the Unite union, have ensured their pay will rise from £24,420.50 to ...
Open access

Budget day sees biggest day of strikes yet (397 words)

On 15 March, the day of the government’s Spring Budget, over 500,000 workers took strike action in the biggest day of action since the current wave ...
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Trouble brewing at local authorities (331 words)

The latest local government pay offer, announced at the end of February, falls short of short of what’s needed after years of cuts, says public ...
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Payline deals show above-average increases (467 words)

The latest agreements on the LRD’s Payline database show pay boosts for supermarket, aviation and bank workers, as well as drivers, higher than the ...
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Deal may be nearer at Royal Mail Group (281 words)

In March, the Royal Mail Group and the CWU communications workers’ union made progress towards ending their long-lasting dispute over pay and the ...
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Airports staff to vote on new offer (169 words)

Last month we reported on the strike action closing 11 airports that are members of Highlands and Islands Airports Limited. Now, one of the unions ...
Open access

Distillery workers win £4,900 boost to wages (114 words)

Workers at Edrington Distillers in Drumchapel have accepted a pay deal worth 12% over a year, ending a dispute over new shift patterns and unsociable ...
Open access

Equality news

Pension change to harm older workers, says Age UK (156 words)

Moves to accelerate the planned rise in state pension age (SPA) “could have devastating consequences for millions of people in their 50s and early 6 ...
Open access

Pay gap means women work two months free (155 words)

Women work on average nearly two months without wages every year compared to men, according to a TUC analysis of the gender pay gap. ...
Open access

Bill would hit BAME workers, equality bodies warn (279 words)

Four of the UK’s leading equalities bodies have condemned the government’s planned anti-strikes bill as “a huge step backwards for tackling ...
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Childcare costs forcing women out of work (222 words)

Three-quarters of mothers who pay for childcare say it no longer makes financial sense for them to work, according to a new national report from ...
Open access

UK fifth in pay gap progress (179 words)

British companies overall rank fifth in the world for progress towards gender equality, a new global survey has found after studying 3,787 large ...
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Learning and training news

Union learning and training provision boosted (410 words)

A full range of courses for reps is now being run by the CWU communications union – including in-person events – in what it calls the “superb ...
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Lifelong loans slammed (147 words)

The University and College Union (UCU) has criticised the government’s plans for a Lifelong Learning Entitlement (LLE) – which gives adults ...
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Recruitment and organisation news

Think tank calls on Welsh government to empower trade unions (389 words)

An independent think tank has called on the Welsh government to take specific actions to empower trade unions, including creating a plan to boost ...
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European news

Dutch local government unions match inflation (141 words)

Dutch unions have reached agreement on a new pay settlement for 2023 that broadly keeps pace with inflation, which was 8.0% in the Netherlands in ...
Open access

Danish deals deliver more money (140 words)

The current round of negotiations in Denmark has produced changes at national level which will result in more money in workers’ pockets. Most pay ...
Open access

Deutsche Post settles after overwhelming strike vote (424 words)

Deutsche Post, Germany’s largest postal business, has agreed to inflation-matching pay rises which combine a flat-rate increase with a series of ...
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Care settlement after four years of negotiation (314 words)

Employers and unions in the care sector have reached agreement on a new three-year deal covering around 300,000 workers across Spain. ...
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Employment law - Case reports

Minimum wage for term-time workers (525 words)

Ms Lloyd was a part-time learning support assistant at a private boys’ school in South Croydon. She worked 21 hours across three days per week, on ...
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Terms of contract can determine employment status (1,177 words)

Dr Ter-Berg was a dentist and principal of a group of three dental practices. He sold the business comprising those practices to Simply Smile Manor ...
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Employer’s change of mind did not remove disadvantage (970 words)

Assistant store manager Ms Glover was employed by global fashion brand Lacoste UK. She worked 39 hours over a five-day week, with the actual hours ...
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Tribunal finds prejudice against older employees (1,228 words)

Mr Cowie was a 58-year-old divisional president at a global engineering metallurgical company making products for the automotive and aerospace ...
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‘Without prejudice’ dismissal letter was valid termination (687 words)

Night worker Mr Meaker was engaged in heavy manual work and suffered back injuries. Following the second of these injuries, he was off work for an ...
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Health & safety news

Dog attack increase is no surprise to postal union (287 words)

The number of dog attacks recorded by police in England and Wales rose by more than a third over the past five years, a BBC investigation has found. ...
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Unions want action on safety (174 words)

The NAHT headteachers’ union has raised “very significant concerns” about the potential risks posed by the historical use of RAAC reinforced ...
Open access

Poor ventilation blamed for gas and air suspension (226 words)

The RCM midwives’ union says poor ventilation in delivery suites and labour wards is behind NHS trust decisions to temporarily suspend the use of ...
Open access

Union launches menopause campaign (183 words)

The Usdaw shopworkers’ union has launched a new menopause campaign to seek better workplace rights and improved support for the health and ...
Open access

Work proper hours to stop burnout, says TUC (87 words)

TUC analysis for its 19th annual Work Your Proper Hours Day found 3.5 million people did unpaid overtime in 2022, putting in an average of 7.4 unpaid ...
Open access

Health & safety - HSE Monitor

New asbestos awareness campaign is aimed at young workers (80 words)

A new HSE campaign aims to raise awareness of the dangers of asbestos among young plumbers, electricians and other tradespeople who began their ...
Open access

Get ready for new high-rise safety regime, regulator says (124 words)

The BSR building safety regulator within the HSE is calling on owners and managers of higher-risk buildings to prepare for “a new wave of ...
Open access

Prison service may face homicide charge (61 words)

In what the Inquest charity described as a historic development, Police Scotland will investigate the Scottish Prison Service for corporate homicide ...
Open access

HSE ‘must act on harassment’ (266 words)

The STUC Scottish Trades Union Congress marked International Women’s Day on 8 March by calling on the HSE safety watchdog to regulate sexual ...
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Union wants action on bullying in government (218 words)

Bullying and harassment by ministers is going unchecked across Whitehall and can no longer be dismissed as isolated incidents, according to research ...
Open access

Still no answers seven years on (209 words)

Safety campaigners and the families of four men killed as they were preparing the boiler house at Didcot power station for demolition in February 2016 ...
Open access


Safety in motion: how unions are tackling transport dangers (3,389 words)

The RMT transport union makes clear that the current wave of strike action by its members at National Rail, the train operating companies and London ...
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Rising to the challenge: pay bargaining in 2022-23 (2,260 words)

However you measure it, the last 18 months have seen the cost of living soar, eating into wages and salaries. But pay negotiators responded, ...
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