Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre Glasgow Trade Union Recognition

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2015 National Delegate Conference
23 February 2015

Conference notes that this year’s event is in the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) Glasgow. SECC UNISON members continue to be disappointed over SECC management and Glasgow City Council’s refusal to grant trade union recognition.

Over the last year, SECC management have continued their anti-trade union stance and doggedly refuse to positively engage with UNISON representatives nor allow them access to talk to SECC staff. CEO, Peter Duthie has made it clear SECC will ‘not respond directly to requests regarding company matters from UNISON; effectively ceasing communication with the trade union.

Over the last year a formal recognition request, under the Employment Relations Act 1999, was made to SECC as 10% membership of the total number of SECC staff had been reached. This was refused by CEO.

Matters have not been helped by majority shareholder, Glasgow City Council, who own 91% of the Arms Length External Organisation and currently has one Glasgow City Councillor and three Council employees on its Board of Directors. Despite a UNISON Glasgow City Branch communication to all 79 Glasgow City Councillors, including Council Leader Gordon Matheson, only 6 have responded.

Conference is disappointed with Glasgow City Council’s refusal to become actively involved in the issue of trade union recognition, especially after Council passed a motion on 21st February 2014 stating ‘Council reaffirms its commitment to the principle and practise of collective bargaining and negotiation to determine workers’ pay and conditions and further agrees that this is the principle route by which all of the Council family should continue to conduct relations with their staff’.

Conference therefore calls on the Glasgow City Council leadership to abide by the Council’s said motion and urgently meet with UNISON Glasgow City Branch officials to pro-actively discuss the situation at the SECC with a view to granting SECC full statutory trade union recognition and collective bargaining rights to UNISON and their members.

Conference also notes that current and proposed anti-trade union laws which give rise to situations such as ours and hamper the daily business of trade unions and their members should be challenged vigorously by UNISON, and through other trade union organisations such as the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom, in order that trade union members can have an effective and unhindered say in the working conditions of their own workplaces.