UNISON calls for last-ditch talks with charity

“Talk to us or face industrial action” is the strongly worded message behind a letter from UNISON to the charity Turning Point. The union is outraged by the charity’s plan to sack its 2,600 staff and re-employ them on worse terms and conditions.

To add insult to injury the charity has engaged in a systematic policy of union de-recognition following TUPE transfers of staff to Turning Point. The letter points to “the lack of consultation over the current proposed changes to the terms and conditions of staff. Despite this, UNISON retain hundreds of members employed by Turning Point, and it is untenable for Turning Point management to attempt to ignore the wishes of its staff to be represented by a union of their own choice.”

The letter further warns that many UNISON members in Turning Point are to be balloted for industrial action at the start of January 2013, in opposition to the proposed changes.

Simon Watson, UNISON National Officer for Charities, said:

“It is a disgrace that a charity like Turning Point – set up to care for people in need – should treat their own staff so badly. We have written to chief executive Lord Adebowale, warning that time is running out to avoid a ballot for industrial action.

“Even at this late stage, we are willing to meet and work together to resolve the situation. However, if Lord Adebowale continues to slam the door in the face of UNISON we will be left with no choice but to ballot our members for industrial action.

“A race to the bottom is not the way to attract and retain decent staff and that means that the charity’s clients will suffer.”