Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Unions give deadline to MoD for withdrawal of plan

Military base contractorisation dispute

TGWU/ACTS and Prospect have threatened to take legal action against the Ministry of Defence unless they receive a firm commitment by the end of the month, that the proposed programme of contractorisation will be withdrawn.

The Unions have written to the Command Secretary British Forces stating out their position and identifying what they believe to be breaches of the EU directive on the transfer of undertakings, Employment Ordinance and established consultation procedures between the MoD and Unions.

The Unions also argue that the proposed manner of implementation is likely “to breach the constitutional and or human rights of the persons affected.”

Furthermore they call on the Command Secretary to provide an undertaking “by close of business on March 31st 2005,” that the MoD will take all necessary steps to withdraw its programme of implementation, and not seek to impose it or any other programme of contractorisation in respect of the MoD jobs in question, “unless and until a proper information and consultation programme involving transfers which do not create any job risks for the employees has been put in place in accordance with the provisions of the Employment Ordinance and the underlying objectives of the Directive.”

In a statement by lawyers representing the two Unions Hassans and Attias & Levy respectively, they criticise what they describe as “the pre-determined nature of some aspects of the proposal” to the effect that certain benefits will not transfer and that not all employment is guaranteed within the contractor companies. Meanwhile the Unions have reiterated their “fundamental objection to the manner in which these proposals have been announced, and the lack of proper information and consultation.”

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