Following on from the disastrous cuts to public services proposed and voted through at last week’s Full Council Budget meeting, Brighton & Hove branch Unison have voiced their concern, to the Labour administration, around the cut proposed and voted for by the Labour Group to union paid facility time to the tune of 50k. This paid time allows experienced and trained union representatives to engage in all the many and various issues that BHCC corporately need to engage with unions on, such as collective bargaining, consultations on redundancies and restructures, changes to contracts, dismissal hearings, etc. UNISON had already suffered a cut to a full time post at last year’s budget, making it more difficult for the union to support its members through some very difficult cuts to services.
Sue Beatty, UNISON Branch Secretary, said:
The cut to our facilities time at this years’ budget meeting was as a direct result of a proposal put into the budget by the Labour Group, the very politicians that we would expect and hope would want to see us able to carry out the fundamental support and representation of our members during such difficult times as they are currently facing in their services. We see this as an absolute betrayal of the long-standing working relationship this union has had with the Labour Group and do not expect the political party which was founded, and is funded, by trade unions to treat us with such contempt! I have written to Warren Morgan, Leader of the Council to express our dismay and concern. This branch shall now be meeting to discuss how best we deal with the continued priority of supporting our members as well as the future relationship between ourselves and the Labour Group in Brighton & Hove.”
Brighton & Hove Unison would also like to make it absolutely clear that the suggestion that we can “work around” this by getting existing workplace representatives to pick up the extra work is unworkable. Councillors who claim that this idea came from council unions are in fact repeating “fake news” and adding to the confusion among all those trying to resist these cuts