Consultative Ballot – 7 days to go!
As reported in our newsletter on 17th July, Peter Skyte, the UNITE National Officer for the IT & Communications sector, wrote the Fujitsu offering negotiations on pay and pensions. Ella Bennett, the new HR Director for Fujitsu UK & Ireland, has replied, rejecting discussions.
Ella’s letter includes a statement about the pay freeze:
“the pay decision, though not welcomed, was understood by the majority of our employees”
Unless she means that we understood that it was yet another attempt to boost profits at the expense of employees, this is a clear demonstration of just how out of touch our senior management are.
If the company are unwilling to respond to the strength of our argument, staff have to choose between accepting attack after attack or saying Enough Is Enough and using the argument of our strength.
In the light of this, your elected “combine-21” committee has decided to open the consultative ballot, with ballot papers being posted out to UNITE members employed by Fujitsu Services across the UK on Monday 3rd August. Your reps are delighted to report that the PCS union (which organises staff on a number of Fujitsu’s government contracts) has decided to work side-by-side with UNITE and will be holding a consultative ballot of PCS members at the same time.
UNITE and PCS are campaigning for the same broad goals that all employees can unite behind:
1. A fairer pay system
2. More money for employees
3. Defend the ICL DB pension scheme
4. Improve pension provision for those with something worse
Your reps are urging every member to vote YES + YES and return your vote straight away when you receive your ballot papers.
Your reps believe that a big YES + YES vote is an essential step in our campaign. Without it there is no chance of the company seriously listening to employees over pay and pensions.
The questions on the consultative ballot will be the same as the ones which will be legally required if we go ahead to a statutory ballot for industrial action:
* “Are you prepared to take part in strike action?”
* “Are you prepared to take part in industrial action short of strike?”
Your reps believe it is crucial that there is a strong YES vote on both questions – one form of action without the other would be ineffective or unworkable.
UNITE has already issued some Questions & Answers about the consultative ballot (when it was running on a different timescale), and more will be produced during the process.
UNITE and PCS have produced a new joint leaflet for the pay and pensions campaign. It is important that it is distributed as widely as possible across the company. Can you help?
If you can help distribute the leaflet where you work, please speak to one of your local reps or email your reps centrally saying how many leaflets you need and where you intend to distribute them.